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scrutney

the federalist papers

the federalist papers.

General Introduction
For the Independent Journal.
HAMILTON

#1.

To the People of the State of New York:

AFTER an unequivocal experience of the inefficiency of the subsisting federal government, you are called upon to deliberate on a new Constitution for the United States of America. The subject speaks its own importance; comprehending in its consequences nothing less than the existence of the UNION, the safety and welfare of the parts of which it is composed, the fate of an empire in many respects the most interesting in the world. It has been frequently remarked that it seems to have been reserved to the people of this country, by their conduct and example, to decide the important question, whether societies of men are really capable or not of establishing good government from reflection and choice, or whether they are forever destined to depend for their political constitutions on accident and force. If there be any truth in the remark, the crisis at which we are arrived may with propriety be regarded as the era in which that decision is to be made; and a wrong election of the part we shall act may, in this view, deserve to be considered as the general misfortune of mankind. This idea will add the inducements of philanthropy to those of patriotism, to heighten the solicitude which all considerate and good men must feel for the event. Happy will it be if our choice should be directed by a judicious estimate of our true interests, unperplexed and unbiased by considerations not connected with the public good. But this is a thing more ardently to be wished than seriously to be expected. The plan offered to our deliberations affects too many particular interests, innovates upon too many local institutions, not to involve in its discussion a variety of objects foreign to its merits, and of views, passions and prejudices little favorable to the discovery of truth.

Among the most formidable of the obstacles which the new Constitution will have to encounter may readily be distinguished the obvious interest of a certain class of men in every State to resist all changes which may hazard a diminution of the power, emolument, and consequence of the offices they hold under the State establishments; and the perverted ambition of another class of men, who will either hope to aggrandize themselves by the confusions of their country, or will flatter themselves with fairer prospects of elevation from the subdivision of the empire into several partial confederacies than from its union under one government.

It is not, however, my design to dwell upon observations of this nature. I am well aware that it would be disingenuous to resolve indiscriminately the opposition of any set of men (merely because their situations might subject them to suspicion) into interested or ambitious views. Candor will oblige us to admit that even such men may be actuated by upright intentions; and it cannot be doubted that much of the opposition which has made its appearance, or may hereafter make its appearance, will spring from sources, blameless at least, if not respectable--the honest errors of minds led astray by preconceived jealousies and fears. So numerous indeed and so powerful are the causes which serve to give a false bias to the judgment, that we, upon many occasions, see wise and good men on the wrong as well as on the right side of questions of the first magnitude to society. This circumstance, if duly attended to, would furnish a lesson of moderation to those who are ever so much persuaded of their being in the right in any controversy. And a further reason for caution, in this respect, might be drawn from the reflection that we are not always sure that those who advocate the truth are influenced by purer principles than their antagonists. Ambition, avarice, personal animosity, party opposition, and many other motives not more laudable than these, are apt to operate as well upon those who support as those who oppose the right side of a question. Were there not even these inducements to moderation, nothing could be more ill-judged than that intolerant spirit which has, at all times, characterized political parties. For in politics, as in religion, it is equally absurd to aim at making proselytes by fire and sword. Heresies in either can rarely be cured by persecution.

And yet, however just these sentiments will be allowed to be, we have already sufficient indications that it will happen in this as in all former cases of great national discussion. A torrent of angry and malignant passions will be let loose. To judge from the conduct of the opposite parties, we shall be led to conclude that they will mutually hope to evince the justness of their opinions, and to increase the number of their converts by the loudness of their declamations and the bitterness of their invectives. An enlightened zeal for the energy and efficiency of government will be stigmatized as the offspring of a temper fond of despotic power and hostile to the principles of liberty. An over-scrupulous jealousy of danger to the rights of the people, which is more commonly the fault of the head than of the heart, will be represented as mere pretense and artifice, the stale bait for popularity at the expense of the public good. It will be forgotten, on the one hand, that jealousy is the usual concomitant of love, and that the noble enthusiasm of liberty is apt to be infected with a spirit of narrow and illiberal distrust. On the other hand, it will be equally forgotten that the vigor of government is essential to the security of liberty; that, in the contemplation of a sound and well-informed judgment, their interest can never be separated; and that a dangerous ambition more often lurks behind the specious mask of zeal for the rights of the people than under the forbidden appearance of zeal for the firmness and efficiency of government. History will teach us that the former has been found a much more certain road to the introduction of despotism than the latter, and that of those men who have overturned the liberties of republics, the greatest number have begun their career by paying an obsequious court to the people; commencing demagogues, and ending tyrants.

In the course of the preceding observations, I have had an eye, my fellow-citizens, to putting you upon your guard against all attempts, from whatever quarter, to influence your decision in a matter of the utmost moment to your welfare, by any impressions other than those which may result from the evidence of truth. You will, no doubt, at the same time, have collected from the general scope of them, that they proceed from a source not unfriendly to the new Constitution. Yes, my countrymen, I own to you that, after having given it an attentive consideration, I am clearly of opinion it is your interest to adopt it. I am convinced that this is the safest course for your liberty, your dignity, and your happiness. I affect not reserves which I do not feel. I will not amuse you with an appearance of deliberation when I have decided. I frankly acknowledge to you my convictions, and I will freely lay before you the reasons on which they are founded. The consciousness of good intentions disdains ambiguity. I shall not, however, multiply professions on this head. My motives must remain in the depository of my own breast. My arguments will be open to all, and may be judged of by all. They shall at least be offered in a spirit which will not disgrace the cause of truth.

I propose, in a series of papers, to discuss the following interesting particulars:

THE UTILITY OF THE UNION TO YOUR POLITICAL PROSPERITY THE INSUFFICIENCY OF THE PRESENT CONFEDERATION TO PRESERVE THAT UNION THE NECESSITY OF A GOVERNMENT AT LEAST EQUALLY ENERGETIC WITH THE ONE PROPOSED, TO THE ATTAINMENT OF THIS OBJECT THE CONFORMITY OF THE PROPOSED CONSTITUTION TO THE TRUE PRINCIPLES OF REPUBLICAN GOVERNMENT ITS ANALOGY TO YOUR OWN STATE CONSTITUTION and lastly, THE ADDITIONAL SECURITY WHICH ITS ADOPTION WILL AFFORD TO THE PRESERVATION OF THAT SPECIES OF GOVERNMENT, TO LIBERTY, AND TO PROPERTY.

In the progress of this discussion I shall endeavor to give a satisfactory answer to all the objections which shall have made their appearance, that may seem to have any claim to your attention.

It may perhaps be thought superfluous to offer arguments to prove the utility of the UNION, a point, no doubt, deeply engraved on the hearts of the great body of the people in every State, and one, which it may be imagined, has no adversaries. But the fact is, that we already hear it whispered in the private circles of those who oppose the new Constitution, that the thirteen States are of too great extent for any general system, and that we must of necessity resort to separate confederacies of distinct portions of the whole.1 This doctrine will, in all probability, be gradually propagated, till it has votaries enough to countenance an open avowal of it. For nothing can be more evident, to those who are able to take an enlarged view of the subject, than the alternative of an adoption of the new Constitution or a dismemberment of the Union. It will therefore be of use to begin by examining the advantages of that Union, the certain evils, and the probable dangers, to which every State will be exposed from its dissolution. This shall accordingly constitute the subject of my next address.

PUBLIUS.

a quick commentary from national review online:
the perennial publius. federalist #1.
bieramar

Aw, c'mon scrutney.

Way too long, too much rationalized logic, too many words, too many distinctions.

After all, if a comment can't be succinct, who'll have time to read it - yawn - let alone think about the progression of thought and proof of logic?

We need talking points and catch phrases and political aphorisms and ad hominems like 'socialist' or 'marxist' or 'christian' or 'taxes' or '?' to avoid any possibility of actually thinking about what is actually being argued.
coebul

Are you speaking of one of your posts or the Federalist papers?
bieramar

All the Federalist essays are linked here: http://www.let.rug.nl/usa/D/1776-1800/federalist/fedxx.htm

And the Anti-Federalist's are here: http://www.let.rug.nl/usa/D/1776-1800/federalist/antixx.htm
coebul

But the Federalist won!
bieramar

coebul wrote:
But the Federalist won!


Heh, heh, heh!  

Cute quip, and got me chuckling ––––––– but historically inaccurate.

The writings (Federalist and Anti-Federalist alike), debating, and ratification of our original Constitution and its first Amendments - especially the first ten of twelve proposed - constitute The Great Compromise in modern history.  

And as long as such compromises have continued we remained a viable Republic, with our Constitution imitated and copied in the great majority of nations around the globe ever since.
coebul

Compromise or not the Federalists won the day.  Polisci 101 does not teach the Anti-Federalist papers.  In fact unless you are either a polisci student or are interested in the US Constitution the chances are you have never heard of the anti Federalists.  

We have a strong (and getting stronger) Federal government as testament to that belief....
bieramar

coebul wrote:
Compromise or not the Federalists won the day.  

Polisci 101 does not teach the Anti-Federalist papers.


PoliSci 101 teaches the Anti-Federalist papers in private liberal arts colleges and in many (if not most) state universities across the nation.  

Not understanding the arguments of the Founders results in not understanding the Constitution.

But the proof of the compromises is in the pudding - and the pudding is the U.S. Constitution itself.

As we go through it (the  Constitution and each Amendment) section by section in this Forum it will be relatively easy to identify which proponents' arguments - Federalist, Anti-Federalist, other or compromise - "won the day" on each and every principle, mandate, assignment of powers et al.
scrutney

bieramar wrote:
Aw, c'mon scrutney.

Way too long, too much rationalized logic, too many words, too many distinctions.

After all, if a comment can't be succinct, who'll have time to read it - yawn - let alone think about the progression of thought and proof of logic?

We need talking points and catch phrases and political aphorisms and ad hominems like 'socialist' or 'marxist' or 'christian' or 'taxes' or '?' to avoid any possibility of actually thinking about what is actually being argued.


sadly, you're probably right.
still, as long as you and coe are going to parse the constitution, i thought it might be a good idea to take a look at the founder's sales pitches for said document.

as for ad honinems?
paraphrasing hamilton's flowery prose:
'there are some right bastards out there who will oppose this document for personal gain...also, dumbasses who are too stupid to see the beneifits.
attend, and be enlightened.'


now that's framing
scrutney

federalist #2

Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence
For the Independent Journal.
JAY

To the People of the State of New York:

WHEN the people of America reflect that they are now called upon to decide a question, which, in its consequences, must prove one of the most important that ever engaged their attention, the propriety of their taking a very comprehensive, as well as a very serious, view of it, will be evident.

Nothing is more certain than the indispensable necessity of government, and it is equally undeniable, that whenever and however it is instituted, the people must cede to it some of their natural rights in order to vest it with requisite powers. It is well worthy of consideration therefore, whether it would conduce more to the interest of the people of America that they should, to all general purposes, be one nation, under one federal government, or that they should divide themselves into separate confederacies, and give to the head of each the same kind of powers which they are advised to place in one national government.

It has until lately been a received and uncontradicted opinion that the prosperity of the people of America depended on their continuing firmly united, and the wishes, prayers, and efforts of our best and wisest citizens have been constantly directed to that object. But politicians now appear, who insist that this opinion is erroneous, and that instead of looking for safety and happiness in union, we ought to seek it in a division of the States into distinct confederacies or sovereignties. However extraordinary this new doctrine may appear, it nevertheless has its advocates; and certain characters who were much opposed to it formerly, are at present of the number. Whatever may be the arguments or inducements which have wrought this change in the sentiments and declarations of these gentlemen, it certainly would not be wise in the people at large to adopt these new political tenets without being fully convinced that they are founded in truth and sound policy.

It has often given me pleasure to observe that independent America was not composed of detached and distant territories, but that one connected, fertile, widespreading country was the portion of our western sons of liberty. Providence has in a particular manner blessed it with a variety of soils and productions, and watered it with innumerable streams, for the delight and accommodation of its inhabitants. A succession of navigable waters forms a kind of chain round its borders, as if to bind it together; while the most noble rivers in the world, running at convenient distances, present them with highways for the easy communication of friendly aids, and the mutual transportation and exchange of their various commodities.

With equal pleasure I have as often taken notice that Providence has been pleased to give this one connected country to one united people--a people descended from the same ancestors, speaking the same language, professing the same religion, attached to the same principles of government, very similar in their manners and customs, and who, by their joint counsels, arms, and efforts, fighting side by side throughout a long and bloody war, have nobly established general liberty and independence.

This country and this people seem to have been made for each other, and it appears as if it was the design of Providence, that an inheritance so proper and convenient for a band of brethren, united to each other by the strongest ties, should never be split into a number of unsocial, jealous, and alien sovereignties.

Similar sentiments have hitherto prevailed among all orders and denominations of men among us. To all general purposes we have uniformly been one people each individual citizen everywhere enjoying the same national rights, privileges, and protection. As a nation we have made peace and war; as a nation we have vanquished our common enemies; as a nation we have formed alliances, and made treaties, and entered into various compacts and conventions with foreign states.

A strong sense of the value and blessings of union induced the people, at a very early period, to institute a federal government to preserve and perpetuate it. They formed it almost as soon as they had a political existence; nay, at a time when their habitations were in flames, when many of their citizens were bleeding, and when the progress of hostility and desolation left little room for those calm and mature inquiries and reflections which must ever precede the formation of a wise and wellbalanced government for a free people. It is not to be wondered at, that a government instituted in times so inauspicious, should on experiment be found greatly deficient and inadequate to the purpose it was intended to answer.

This intelligent people perceived and regretted these defects. Still continuing no less attached to union than enamored of liberty, they observed the danger which immediately threatened the former and more remotely the latter; and being pursuaded that ample security for both could only be found in a national government more wisely framed, they as with one voice, convened the late convention at Philadelphia, to take that important subject under consideration.

This convention composed of men who possessed the confidence of the people, and many of whom had become highly distinguished by their patriotism, virtue and wisdom, in times which tried the minds and hearts of men, undertook the arduous task. In the mild season of peace, with minds unoccupied by other subjects, they passed many months in cool, uninterrupted, and daily consultation; and finally, without having been awed by power, or influenced by any passions except love for their country, they presented and recommended to the people the plan produced by their joint and very unanimous councils.

Admit, for so is the fact, that this plan is only RECOMMENDED, not imposed, yet let it be remembered that it is neither recommended to BLIND approbation, nor to BLIND reprobation; but to that sedate and candid consideration which the magnitude and importance of the subject demand, and which it certainly ought to receive. But this (as was remarked in the foregoing number of this paper) is more to be wished than expected, that it may be so considered and examined. Experience on a former occasion teaches us not to be too sanguine in such hopes. It is not yet forgotten that well-grounded apprehensions of imminent danger induced the people of America to form the memorable Congress of 1774. That body recommended certain measures to their constituents, and the event proved their wisdom; yet it is fresh in our memories how soon the press began to teem with pamphlets and weekly papers against those very measures. Not only many of the officers of government, who obeyed the dictates of personal interest, but others, from a mistaken estimate of consequences, or the undue influence of former attachments, or whose ambition aimed at objects which did not correspond with the public good, were indefatigable in their efforts to pursuade the people to reject the advice of that patriotic Congress. Many, indeed, were deceived and deluded, but the great majority of the people reasoned and decided judiciously; and happy they are in reflecting that they did so.

They considered that the Congress was composed of many wise and experienced men. That, being convened from different parts of the country, they brought with them and communicated to each other a variety of useful information. That, in the course of the time they passed together in inquiring into and discussing the true interests of their country, they must have acquired very accurate knowledge on that head. That they were individually interested in the public liberty and prosperity, and therefore that it was not less their inclination than their duty to recommend only such measures as, after the most mature deliberation, they really thought prudent and advisable.

These and similar considerations then induced the people to rely greatly on the judgment and integrity of the Congress; and they took their advice, notwithstanding the various arts and endeavors used to deter them from it. But if the people at large had reason to confide in the men of that Congress, few of whom had been fully tried or generally known, still greater reason have they now to respect the judgment and advice of the convention, for it is well known that some of the most distinguished members of that Congress, who have been since tried and justly approved for patriotism and abilities, and who have grown old in acquiring political information, were also members of this convention, and carried into it their accumulated knowledge and experience.

It is worthy of remark that not only the first, but every succeeding Congress, as well as the late convention, have invariably joined with the people in thinking that the prosperity of America depended on its Union. To preserve and perpetuate it was the great object of the people in forming that convention, and it is also the great object of the plan which the convention has advised them to adopt. With what propriety, therefore, or for what good purposes, are attempts at this particular period made by some men to depreciate the importance of the Union? Or why is it suggested that three or four confederacies would be better than one? I am persuaded in my own mind that the people have always thought right on this subject, and that their universal and uniform attachment to the cause of the Union rests on great and weighty reasons, which I shall endeavor to develop and explain in some ensuing papers. They who promote the idea of substituting a number of distinct confederacies in the room of the plan of the convention, seem clearly to foresee that the rejection of it would put the continuance of the Union in the utmost jeopardy. That certainly would be the case, and I sincerely wish that it may be as clearly foreseen by every good citizen, that whenever the dissolution of the Union arrives, America will have reason to exclaim, in the words of the poet: "FAREWELL! A LONG FAREWELL TO ALL MY GREATNESS.''

PUBLIUS.

a quick commentary on feds 2 from the national review online:
the perennial publius #2
coebul

bieramar wrote:
coebul wrote:
Compromise or not the Federalists won the day.  

Polisci 101 does not teach the Anti-Federalist papers.


PoliSci 101 teaches the Anti-Federalist papers in private liberal arts colleges and in many (if not most) state universities across the nation.  
Didn't when I took the course, didn't when my daughter took the course and I would be willing to bet they don't when my son takes the course.  

bieramar wrote:
Not understanding the arguments of the Founders results in not understanding the Constitution.

But the proof of the compromises is in the pudding - and the pudding is the U.S. Constitution itself.

As we go through it (the  Constitution and each Amendment) section by section in this Forum it will be relatively easy to identify which proponents' arguments - Federalist, Anti-Federalist, other or compromise - "won the day" on each and every principle, mandate, assignment of powers et al.
That may be but I was talking about an intro course.  The level at which this forum will go is post graduate work at least.   Polisci 101 does not begin to cover the anti-federalists.
bieramar

scrutney wrote:
bieramar wrote:
Aw, c'mon scrutney.

Way too long, too much rationalized logic, too many words, too many distinctions.

After all, if a comment can't be succinct, who'll have time to read it - yawn - let alone think about the progression of thought and proof of logic?

We need talking points and catch phrases and political aphorisms and ad hominems like 'socialist' or 'marxist' or 'christian' or 'taxes' or '?' to avoid any possibility of actually thinking about what is actually being argued.


sadly, you're probably right.
still, as long as you and coe are going to parse the constitution, i thought it might be a good idea to take a look at the founder's sales pitches for said document.


OMG, I hope you (and everyone else) recognizes the sarcasm in my post!

Absolutely we need to look at the Founders' sales pitches - but ALL of the Founders, not just those with whom you, or me, or someone else, agrees and quotes.

My desire is that by the time the Constitution is parsed in this Forum we all will have a great understanding of it.

AND it is appropriate to analyze and criticize the Founders' thoughts and opinions also - none of them, like none of us, are infallible.

For example, in Federalist #2 which you reproduce, Jay writes "I have as often taken notice that Providence has been pleased to give this one connected country to one united people--a people descended from the same ancestors, speaking the same language, professing the same religion, attached to the same principles of government, very similar in their manners and customs, and who, by their joint counsels, arms, and efforts, fighting side by side throughout a long and bloody war, have nobly established general liberty and independence. This country and this people seem to have been made for each other, and it appears as if it was the design of Providence, that an inheritance so proper and convenient for a band of brethren, united to each other by the strongest ties, should never be split into a number of unsocial, jealous, and alien sovereignties."

That is bullcrap of the nth degree, and has no relationship to the reality of the residents of the colonies at the time Jay writes.  

[EDIT: From the 1790 Census; 48% of Americans are of English heritage, 20% African, 16% Irish/Scottish, and 16% European (Dutch, French, German, Moravian, Swedish).  


As such, as a false premise, any logical conclusions following from it are also false.

And it amuses me greatly that the National Review commentary reads:
"Sure, Jay exaggerates. After all, his purpose is to remind Americans of what already unites them as one country, in order to persuade them to knit it still closer together with the new Constitution."  

That logic - that type of rationalization - that apologetic excusing of hyperbole and untruths - that 'status quo' of conservative dissembling - is exactly what so many, especially the younger generations, are reacting against today.
bieramar

coebul wrote:
Compromise or not the Federalists won the day.  
Polisci 101 does not teach the Anti-Federalist papers.


bieramar wrote:
PoliSci 101 teaches the Anti-Federalist papers in private liberal arts colleges and in many (if not most) state universities across the nation.


coebul wrote:
Didn't when I took the course, didn't when my daughter took the course and I would be willing to bet they don't when my son takes the course.  

...I was talking about an intro course.  The level at which this forum will go is post graduate work at least.   Polisci 101 does not begin to cover the anti-federalists.


My mind boggles that there are colleges which teach an introductory political science course without mention of Patrick Henry and the Bill of Rights. I erred when I wrote that the Anti-Federalist papers were taught; I should have written that the existence of the Anti-Federalists, and their arguments and opposition to the proposed Constitution were taught.

And I take your point that the Federalists "won the day" in that the Constitution was ratified by a sufficient number of states and thus the Union of the United States was continued.  

My counterpoint (initially inadequately expressed) is that the Anti-Federalists also "won the day" when the Bill of Rights, 10 of the proposed 12 Amendments, were ratified.

That is the Great Compromise to which I referred, which if not taught in an intro course should be the basis of getting tuition money refunded.  

But also there were many smaller compromises, as the initial druthers of the most rigid Federalists were defeated and modified in debates with the Anti-Federalists, and those smaller compromises are apparent in the body of the Constitution itself.  

Every premise and argument in the Federalist papers did not end up in the Constitution. As you pointed out, the counter Anti-Federalist papers and arguments are taught in advanced classes.

I'm intrigued by your and your daughters' experiences in PoliSci 101.
Were the Federalist Papers taught or mentioned, with no mention of the Anti-Federalists?  
Were the arguments of Madison and Hamilton presented but not those of Henry and Mason?
coebul

bieramar wrote:
coebul wrote:
Compromise or not the Federalists won the day.  
Polisci 101 does not teach the Anti-Federalist papers.


bieramar wrote:
PoliSci 101 teaches the Anti-Federalist papers in private liberal arts colleges and in many (if not most) state universities across the nation.


coebul wrote:
Didn't when I took the course, didn't when my daughter took the course and I would be willing to bet they don't when my son takes the course.  

...I was talking about an intro course.  The level at which this forum will go is post graduate work at least.   Polisci 101 does not begin to cover the anti-federalists.


My mind boggles that there are colleges which teach an introductory political science course without mention of Patrick Henry and the Bill of Rights. I erred when I wrote that the Anti-Federalist papers were taught; I should have written that the existence of the Anti-Federalists, and their arguments and opposition to the proposed Constitution were taught.
bierarmar, it was 30 years ago but I do not remember even hearing about the Anti-Federalists until much later in my time as a poli-sci major.  That doesn't mean they weren't discussed but the topic was never taught until higher level courses.  Intro, was just that an introduction to the topic of Political Science.  Today the course is taught even differently then when I took it.  My daughter knowing my interests took an intro class and came to me for help.  She asked me what different forms of government were and gave me a list.... I could answer maybe 4 and there were 12 maybe 15 most I had never heard of...  Hell I am not sure I began to read Federalist until 2nd semester maybe even 3rd.  

bieramar wrote:
And I take your point that the Federalists "won the day" in that the Constitution was ratified by a sufficient number of states and thus the Union of the United States was continued.  

My counterpoint (initially inadequately expressed) is that the Anti-Federalists also "won the day" when the Bill of Rights, 10 of the proposed 12 Amendments, were ratified.
Absolutely.  

bieramar wrote:
That is the Great Compromise to which I referred, which if not taught in an intro course should be the basis of getting tuition money refunded.  
Well we may disagree here.  I would say the importance of Anti-Federalist would be discussed when you delve into Federalists.  More along the lines of Point Counter point.  But honestly times have changed and who know when and where the discussion takes place.  Suffice it to say it would have to be taught at some point.  

bieramar wrote:
But also there were many smaller compromises, as the initial druthers of the most rigid Federalists were defeated and modified in debates with the Anti-Federalists, and those smaller compromises are apparent in the body of the Constitution itself.  

Every premise and argument in the Federalist papers did not end up in the Constitution. As you pointed out, the counter Anti-Federalist papers and arguments are taught in advanced classes.

I'm intrigued by your and your daughters' experiences in PoliSci 101.
Were the Federalist Papers taught or mentioned, with no mention of the Anti-Federalists?  
Were the arguments of Madison and Hamilton presented but not those of Henry and Mason?
Refer above.  I am not sure Federalist were taught at all.  It was a strange course with lots of terms and definitions.   Nothing about the great compromise nothing about the authors in truth I was lost in the class.  This same prof was teaching a US history class and told my daughter Kennedy died at one pm the next day...  I told her bull shit.  She looked at me and said are you sure..  I told her I remember the day as if it was yesterday.  We turned to Wiki on the internet.  The Prof was in his 30s and was a gleam in daddy's eye yet.  They teach some strange shit these days...  They skip a lot..  especially in an intro class...   Truth be known I have learned a great deal more here then in much of college.  Here I am interested...
scrutney

bieramar wrote:
scrutney wrote:
bieramar wrote:
Aw, c'mon scrutney.

Way too long, too much rationalized logic, too many words, too many distinctions.

After all, if a comment can't be succinct, who'll have time to read it - yawn - let alone think about the progression of thought and proof of logic?

We need talking points and catch phrases and political aphorisms and ad hominems like 'socialist' or 'marxist' or 'christian' or 'taxes' or '?' to avoid any possibility of actually thinking about what is actually being argued.


sadly, you're probably right.
still, as long as you and coe are going to parse the constitution, i thought it might be a good idea to take a look at the founder's sales pitches for said document.


OMG, I hope you (and everyone else) recognizes the sarcasm in my post!



sarcasm may be the lowest form of humor but in some instances it is the most effective.
no...i caught your drift.
but being the elitist swine that i am, i actually agreed with part of your sentiment.
there is certainly no dearth of words in the federalist papers, and long paragraphs filled with abstruse prose that, when translated into common parlance, convey deceptively simple concepts.

hamilton and jay, in feds 1 and 2, respectively, introduce the papers and in a roundabout way, say that anyone who opposes the constitution has ulterior motives (no matter how noble they may be.)*

and in # two, jay posits that we are one group of people (we americans) with a shared history and have shared trial by ordeal...and that we all have common interests.


Quote:
That is bullcrap of the nth degree, and has no relationship to the reality="bier" of the residents of the colonies at the time Jay writes.  As such, as a false premise, any logical conclusions following from it are also false.


i pretty much agree with your sentiment and apparently, so did madison because he proceeded, in federalist #10 (if i remember my federalist papers correctly) to shoot down jay's assertion and posit that it is precisely our diversity that comprises our strength.

reading these papers has brought back a flood of memories from my sophomore year at virginia wesleyan and dr. carlson's polsci class...where 2 classes out of three, he'd ask me about my absent room mate:

"where's montgomery?"

"in alabama."

"droll,very droll scrutney" (the good doctor and just about everyone else at wesleyan reffered to me as scrutney)

they (the federalist papers) also remind me of my first successful pickup line, when i asked a young lady who sat next to me in the class room to come down to my dorm room after class, where we could gain a deeper knowledge of the benefits of union.







* the essence of diplomacy is being able to tell someone to go to hell in such a way, that it sounds like they'll enjoy the trip.
scrutney

federalist #3:

The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning Dangers From Foreign Force and Influence
For the Independent Journal.
JAY


To the People of the State of New York:

IT IS not a new observation that the people of any country (if, like the Americans, intelligent and wellinformed) seldom adopt and steadily persevere for many years in an erroneous opinion respecting their interests. That consideration naturally tends to create great respect for the high opinion which the people of America have so long and uniformly entertained of the importance of their continuing firmly united under one federal government, vested with sufficient powers for all general and national purposes.

The more attentively I consider and investigate the reasons which appear to have given birth to this opinion, the more I become convinced that they are cogent and conclusive.

Among the many objects to which a wise and free people find it necessary to direct their attention, that of providing for their SAFETY seems to be the first. The SAFETY of the people doubtless has relation to a great variety of circumstances and considerations, and consequently affords great latitude to those who wish to define it precisely and comprehensively.

At present I mean only to consider it as it respects security for the preservation of peace and tranquillity, as well as against dangers from FOREIGN ARMS AND INFLUENCE, as from dangers of the LIKE KIND arising from domestic causes. As the former of these comes first in order, it is proper it should be the first discussed. Let us therefore proceed to examine whether the people are not right in their opinion that a cordial Union, under an efficient national government, affords them the best security that can be devised against HOSTILITIES from abroad.

The number of wars which have happened or will happen in the world will always be found to be in proportion to the number and weight of the causes, whether REAL or PRETENDED, which PROVOKE or INVITE them. If this remark be just, it becomes useful to inquire whether so many JUST causes of war are likely to be given by UNITED AMERICA as by DISUNITED America; for if it should turn out that United America will probably give the fewest, then it will follow that in this respect the Union tends most to preserve the people in a state of peace with other nations.

The JUST causes of war, for the most part, arise either from violation of treaties or from direct violence. America has already formed treaties with no less than six foreign nations (*), and all of them, except Prussia, are maritime, and therefore able to annoy and injure us. She has also extensive commerce with Portugal, Spain, and Britain, and, with respect to the two latter, has, in addition, the circumstance of neighborhood to attend to.

It is of high importance to the peace of America that she observe the laws of nations towards all these powers, and to me it appears evident that this will be more perfectly and punctually done by one national government than it could be either by thirteen separate States or by three or four distinct confederacies.

Because when once an efficient national government is established, the best men in the country will not only consent to serve, but also will generally be appointed to manage it; for, although town or country, or other contracted influence, may place men in State assemblies, or senates, or courts of justice, or executive departments, yet more general and extensive reputation for talents and other qualifications will be necessary to recommend men to offices under the national government,--especially as it will have the widest field for choice, and never experience that want of proper persons which is not uncommon in some of the States. Hence, it will result that the administration, the political counsels, and the judicial decisions of the national government will be more wise, systematical, and judicious than those of individual States, and consequently more satisfactory with respect to other nations, as well as more SAFE with respect to us.

Because, under the national government, treaties and articles of treaties, as well as the laws of nations, will always be expounded in one sense and executed in the same manner,--whereas, adjudications on the same points and questions, in thirteen States, or in three or four confederacies, will not always accord or be consistent; and that, as well from the variety of independent courts and judges appointed by different and independent governments, as from the different local laws and interests which may affect and influence them. The wisdom of the convention, in committing such questions to the jurisdiction and judgment of courts appointed by and responsible only to one national government, cannot be too much commended.

Because the prospect of present loss or advantage may often tempt the governing party in one or two States to swerve from good faith and justice; but those temptations, not reaching the other States, and consequently having little or no influence on the national government, the temptation will be fruitless, and good faith and justice be preserved. The case of the treaty of peace with Britain adds great weight to this reasoning.

Because, even if the governing party in a State should be disposed to resist such temptations, yet as such temptations may, and commonly do, result from circumstances peculiar to the State, and may affect a great number of the inhabitants, the governing party may not always be able, if willing, to prevent the injustice meditated, or to punish the aggressors. But the national government, not being affected by those local circumstances, will neither be induced to commit the wrong themselves, nor want power or inclination to prevent or punish its commission by others.

So far, therefore, as either designed or accidental violations of treaties and the laws of nations afford JUST causes of war, they are less to be apprehended under one general government than under several lesser ones, and in that respect the former most favors the SAFETY of the people.

As to those just causes of war which proceed from direct and unlawful violence, it appears equally clear to me that one good national government affords vastly more security against dangers of that sort than can be derived from any other quarter.

Because such violences are more frequently caused by the passions and interests of a part than of the whole; of one or two States than of the Union. Not a single Indian war has yet been occasioned by aggressions of the present federal government, feeble as it is; but there are several instances of Indian hostilities having been provoked by the improper conduct of individual States, who, either unable or unwilling to restrain or punish offenses, have given occasion to the slaughter of many innocent inhabitants.

The neighborhood of Spanish and British territories, bordering on some States and not on others, naturally confines the causes of quarrel more immediately to the borderers. The bordering States, if any, will be those who, under the impulse of sudden irritation, and a quick sense of apparent interest or injury, will be most likely, by direct violence, to excite war with these nations; and nothing can so effectually obviate that danger as a national government, whose wisdom and prudence will not be diminished by the passions which actuate the parties immediately interested.

But not only fewer just causes of war will be given by the national government, but it will also be more in their power to accommodate and settle them amicably. They will be more temperate and cool, and in that respect, as well as in others, will be more in capacity to act advisedly than the offending State. The pride of states, as well as of men, naturally disposes them to justify all their actions, and opposes their acknowledging, correcting, or repairing their errors and offenses. The national government, in such cases, will not be affected by this pride, but will proceed with moderation and candor to consider and decide on the means most proper to extricate them from the difficulties which threaten them.

Besides, it is well known that acknowledgments, explanations, and compensations are often accepted as satisfactory from a strong united nation, which would be rejected as unsatisfactory if offered by a State or confederacy of little consideration or power.

In the year 1685, the state of Genoa having offended Louis XIV., endeavored to appease him. He demanded that they should send their Doge, or chief magistrate, accompanied by four of their senators, to FRANCE, to ask his pardon and receive his terms. They were obliged to submit to it for the sake of peace. Would he on any occasion either have demanded or have received the like humiliation from Spain, or Britain, or any other POWERFUL nation?
bieramar

Succinctly the principle of "safety in numbers" in regard to defense, and the principle "reason in lieu of emotion" in regard to just/unjust wars.

They are each generic rationales which are unassailable standing alone - and both follow his initial premise that Americans are intelligent and wellinformed people, firmly united under one federal government, with a shared history of trial by fire in the Revolutionary war, and all holding common interests, language, religion and tradition.
scrutney

yeah, i pretty much read it the same way.
and of course the old: "you get a better class of thieves when the pool is larger" argument.

some of the the papers are superfluous but...in for a penny, in for a pound.
bieramar

scrutney wrote:
some of the the papers are superfluous but...in for a penny, in for a pound.


From my perspective, some of the Federalist essays seem superfluous and unnecessary, and/or easily controverted, e.g. this Federalist 2.

But obviously Jay thought it was necessary to write and publish it.

So the further review question is why did he so think?

It relates to my repeated objections to people who cite a phrase from the Constitution, or from a Founder, and then abstract all kinds of meaning from it –– without context or background (or in some cases any knowledge) of what was going on during the arguments and debates during the Constitutional Convention; or what had gone on since the Declaration of Independence was published, and the first Constitution, replete with flaws and failures, ratified.  

Also when Jay wrote there were already two formal proposals on the table - the Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan - which proposals and arguments Jay was attempting to oppose in his Federalist essays to the voters of New York (which just barely ended up ratifying the Constitution). He was defending against elements of each proposal in his essays.  

He had been the Minister to France during the Revolutionary War, and one of the three /negotiators of the Peace Treaty, and thus had firm allegience to a Federal government with professional specialized politicians making decisions.

Which relates to my earlier contention that neither the Federalist papers nor the Constitution can be understood without reading the Anti-Federalist documents and the debates in the Constitutional Convention.

The inequalities and unjustices between/among the Colonies/States, among their populations (slaves, endentured and contracted servants, freeholders, merchants etc.), among the military drafts (spelled draughts at that time), the militias' and the armies' pay; the unfair indebtednesses to private individuals of each State for Revolutionary Army's costs, the breaking by one State of Treaties signed by another State or by the Confederation, the wars fought across Colony/State lines, the different and opposing religions and languages; those were the contentious times and experiences of the Founders during these years as the various new Constitutions were drafted and argued.  Much of which is whitewashed or overlooked in our history books and school curricula.

Our views today reflect our experience and studies of what has occured post-ratification, and our current perspectives from our individual biases of government "shoulds."

The Founders didn't snap their fingers and create a perfect document and blueprint for government; they screamed and yelled and called each other imbeciles during debates - some packed their parcels and went home in disgust and frustration, others remained and compromised; and intentionally were vague in order to allow later men to re-argue and re-write.

PS: That Jay was a French Huguenot makes his claims of common heritage particularly ironic.
scrutney

Quote:
So the further review question is why did he so think?


well for one thing, he was trying to sell a pig in a poke to a bunch of rugged individualists, who had done just fine(thank you very much) wresting control of america from the hands of the crown....

also, common defense was one of the things that the founders were selling:

Quote:
We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.


i'm not sure what the post war sentiment was but i think it didn't take a genius to figure out that the brits weren't going to take their defeat lying down.(of course i have the benefit of hindsight.)

we (you and i) have grown up with the concept of "out of many, one."...we've had it gently beaten into our skulls since our first day in school (if not earlier).
our forebearers didn't have that socialization.

the concept of the "common defense" back then, was on a more local or, failing that, a state level.
scrutney

federalist paper number 4 , and i feel a rousing chorus of "in the navy" coming on:

The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning Dangers From Foreign Force and Influence
For the Independent Journal.
JAY

To the People of the State of New York:

MY LAST paper assigned several reasons why the safety of the people would be best secured by union against the danger it may be exposed to by JUST causes of war given to other nations; and those reasons show that such causes would not only be more rarely given, but would also be more easily accommodated, by a national government than either by the State governments or the proposed little confederacies.

But the safety of the people of America against dangers from FOREIGN force depends not only on their forbearing to give JUST causes of war to other nations, but also on their placing and continuing themselves in such a situation as not to INVITE hostility or insult; for it need not be observed that there are PRETENDED as well as just causes of war.

It is too true, however disgraceful it may be to human nature, that nations in general will make war whenever they have a prospect of getting anything by it; nay, absolute monarchs will often make war when their nations are to get nothing by it, but for the purposes and objects merely personal, such as thirst for military glory, revenge for personal affronts, ambition, or private compacts to aggrandize or support their particular families or partisans. These and a variety of other motives, which affect only the mind of the sovereign, often lead him to engage in wars not sanctified by justice or the voice and interests of his people. But, independent of these inducements to war, which are more prevalent in absolute monarchies, but which well deserve our attention, there are others which affect nations as often as kings; and some of them will on examination be found to grow out of our relative situation and circumstances.

With France and with Britain we are rivals in the fisheries, and can supply their markets cheaper than they can themselves, notwithstanding any efforts to prevent it by bounties on their own or duties on foreign fish.

With them and with most other European nations we are rivals in navigation and the carrying trade; and we shall deceive ourselves if we suppose that any of them will rejoice to see it flourish; for, as our carrying trade cannot increase without in some degree diminishing theirs, it is more their interest, and will be more their policy, to restrain than to promote it.

In the trade to China and India, we interfere with more than one nation, inasmuch as it enables us to partake in advantages which they had in a manner monopolized, and as we thereby supply ourselves with commodities which we used to purchase from them.

The extension of our own commerce in our own vessels cannot give pleasure to any nations who possess territories on or near this continent, because the cheapness and excellence of our productions, added to the circumstance of vicinity, and the enterprise and address of our merchants and navigators, will give us a greater share in the advantages which those territories afford, than consists with the wishes or policy of their respective sovereigns.

Spain thinks it convenient to shut the Mississippi against us on the one side, and Britain excludes us from the Saint Lawrence on the other; nor will either of them permit the other waters which are between them and us to become the means of mutual intercourse and traffic.

From these and such like considerations, which might, if consistent with prudence, be more amplified and detailed, it is easy to see that jealousies and uneasinesses may gradually slide into the minds and cabinets of other nations, and that we are not to expect that they should regard our advancement in union, in power and consequence by land and by sea, with an eye of indifference and composure.

The people of America are aware that inducements to war may arise out of these circumstances, as well as from others not so obvious at present, and that whenever such inducements may find fit time and opportunity for operation, pretenses to color and justify them will not be wanting. Wisely, therefore, do they consider union and a good national government as necessary to put and keep them in SUCH A SITUATION as, instead of INVITING war, will tend to repress and discourage it. That situation consists in the best possible state of defense, and necessarily depends on the government, the arms, and the resources of the country.

As the safety of the whole is the interest of the whole, and cannot be provided for without government, either one or more or many, let us inquire whether one good government is not, relative to the object in question, more competent than any other given number whatever.

One government can collect and avail itself of the talents and experience of the ablest men, in whatever part of the Union they may be found. It can move on uniform principles of policy. It can harmonize, assimilate, and protect the several parts and members, and extend the benefit of its foresight and precautions to each. In the formation of treaties, it will regard the interest of the whole, and the particular interests of the parts as connected with that of the whole. It can apply the resources and power of the whole to the defense of any particular part, and that more easily and expeditiously than State governments or separate confederacies can possibly do, for want of concert and unity of system. It can place the militia under one plan of discipline, and, by putting their officers in a proper line of subordination to the Chief Magistrate, will, as it were, consolidate them into one corps, and thereby render them more efficient than if divided into thirteen or into three or four distinct independent companies.

What would the militia of Britain be if the English militia obeyed the government of England, if the Scotch militia obeyed the government of Scotland, and if the Welsh militia obeyed the government of Wales? Suppose an invasion; would those three governments (if they agreed at all) be able, with all their respective forces, to operate against the enemy so effectually as the single government of Great Britain would?

We have heard much of the fleets of Britain, and the time may come, if we are wise, when the fleets of America may engage attention. But if one national government, had not so regulated the navigation of Britain as to make it a nursery for seamen--if one national government had not called forth all the national means and materials for forming fleets, their prowess and their thunder would never have been celebrated. Let England have its navigation and fleet--let Scotland have its navigation and fleet--let Wales have its navigation and fleet--let Ireland have its navigation and fleet--let those four of the constituent parts of the British empire be be under four independent governments, and it is easy to perceive how soon they would each dwindle into comparative insignificance.

Apply these facts to our own case. Leave America divided into thirteen or, if you please, into three or four independent governments--what armies could they raise and pay--what fleets could they ever hope to have? If one was attacked, would the others fly to its succor, and spend their blood and money in its defense? Would there be no danger of their being flattered into neutrality by its specious promises, or seduced by a too great fondness for peace to decline hazarding their tranquillity and present safety for the sake of neighbors, of whom perhaps they have been jealous, and whose importance they are content to see diminished? Although such conduct would not be wise, it would, nevertheless, be natural. The history of the states of Greece, and of other countries, abounds with such instances, and it is not improbable that what has so often happened would, under similar circumstances, happen again.

But admit that they might be willing to help the invaded State or confederacy. How, and when, and in what proportion shall aids of men and money be afforded? Who shall command the allied armies, and from which of them shall he receive his orders? Who shall settle the terms of peace, and in case of disputes what umpire shall decide between them and compel acquiescence? Various difficulties and inconveniences would be inseparable from such a situation; whereas one government, watching over the general and common interests, and combining and directing the powers and resources of the whole, would be free from all these embarrassments, and conduce far more to the safety of the people.

But whatever may be our situation, whether firmly united under one national government, or split into a number of confederacies, certain it is, that foreign nations will know and view it exactly as it is; and they will act toward us accordingly. If they see that our national government is efficient and well administered, our trade prudently regulated, our militia properly organized and disciplined, our resources and finances discreetly managed, our credit re-established, our people free, contented, and united, they will be much more disposed to cultivate our friendship than provoke our resentment. If, on the other hand, they find us either destitute of an effectual government (each State doing right or wrong, as to its rulers may seem convenient), or split into three or four independent and probably discordant republics or confederacies, one inclining to Britain, another to France, and a third to Spain, and perhaps played off against each other by the three, what a poor, pitiful figure will America make in their eyes! How liable would she become not only to their contempt but to their outrage, and how soon would dear-bought experience proclaim that when a people or family so divide, it never fails to be against themselves.

PUBLIUS.
auntmartymoo

bieramar wrote:


PoliSci 101 teaches the Anti-Federalist papers in private liberal arts colleges and in many (if not most) state universities across the nation.  



Yep.  My liberal arts college covered Federalists/Anti-Federalists in the introductory classes...and I had already previously studied the subject in high school as well.  And I even helped an 8th-grader at Cathedral Parish School do a paper on the subject about 10 years ago.

But I do agree with Coebul that the focus of political studies tends to be elsewhere.
bieramar

auntmartymoo wrote:
bieramar wrote:


PoliSci 101 teaches the Anti-Federalist papers in private liberal arts colleges and in many (if not most) state universities across the nation.  



Yep.  My liberal arts college covered Federalists/Anti-Federalists in the introductory classes...and I had already previously studied the subject in high school as well.  And I even helped an 8th-grader at Cathedral Parish School do a paper on the subject about 10 years ago.

But I do agree with Coebul that the focus of political studies tends to be elsewhere.


Just a comment - and not to sidetrack into a separate discussion on private v. public education - but your and my experiences reflect the traditional differences between "high church" (Catholic, Episcopal, Anglican et al) education, and public education beginning c. 1960s.

The "high church" schools' curricula were based upon Thomistic/Aristotelian logic process principles; and traditional historic events including different interpretations and documents -  without the politics-based approvals of textbooks, and compromises of content by appointed/elected officials.
bieramar

Back on track

Federalist 4 really exhibits Jay's strongest attribute as a foreign policy expert.  His analysis of the reasons why different bodies/states initiate war is as valid today as it was in the 18th century - especially now in the 21st century where the political "nation-state" is diminishing in power as the powers of international and transnational movements/pacts (economic, religious, political) increase.  

However to see it in the eyes of the residents in the States, especially New York, in 1787 - after the Constitution was published in its final form after months of debates and changes, as is being addressed in other threads - we must remember it is argument to persuade voting citizens (the 4% of the total population) to support the Constitution which would create a centrally governed Union of United States, as opposed to the individual sovereign states going their own way.

Also to understand the "In the Navy" echoes as we read it we must review exactly what was won by the Revolutionary War.

Following are excerpts from the Treaty of Paris - I include the opening just to show the important element of the belief systems of that era.

---  excerpts ---
In the name of the most holy and undivided Trinity.

It having pleased the Divine Providence to dispose the hearts of the most serene and most potent Prince George the Third, by the grace of God, king of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, defender of the faith, duke of Brunswick and Lunebourg, arch-treasurer and prince elector of the Holy Roman Empire etc., and of the United States of America, to forget all past misunderstandings and differences that have unhappily interrupted the good correspondence and friendship which they mutually wish to restore, and to establish such a beneficial and satisfactory intercourse, between the two countries upon the ground of reciprocal advantages and mutual convenience as may promote and secure to both perpetual peace and harmony;...

Article 1st:
His Brittanic Majesty acknowledges the said United States ... to be free sovereign and independent states,...

Article 2nd:
And that all disputes which might arise in future on the subject of the boundaries of the said United States may be prevented, it is hereby agreed and declared, that the following are and shall be their boundaries, viz.; [detailed geographic boundaries, as addressed generally by Jay in Federalist 4]].

Article 3rd:
It is agreed that the people of the United States shall continue to enjoy unmolested the right to take fish of every kind on the Grand Bank and on all the other banks of Newfoundland, also in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence and at all other places in the sea, where the inhabitants of both countries used at any time heretofore to fish.

And also that the inhabitants of the United States shall have liberty to take fish of every kind on such part of the coast of Newfoundland as British fishermen shall use, (but not to dry or cure the same on that island) and also on the coasts, bays and creeks of all other of his Brittanic Majesty's dominions in America; and that the American fishermen shall have liberty to dry and cure fish in any of the unsettled bays, harbors, and creeks of Nova Scotia, Magdalen Islands, and Labrador, so long as the same shall remain unsettled, but so soon as the same or either of them shall be settled, it shall not be lawful for the said fishermen to dry or cure fish at such settlement without a previous agreement for that purpose with the inhabitants, proprietors, or possessors of the ground.

Article 4th:
It is agreed that creditors on either side shall meet with no lawful impediment to the recovery of the full value in sterling money of all bona fide debts heretofore contracted.

Article 5th:
It is agreed that Congress shall earnestly recommend it to the legislatures of the respective states to provide for the restitution of all estates, rights, and properties, which have been confiscated belonging to real British subjects; and also of the estates, rights, and properties of persons resident in districts in the possession on his Majesty's arms and who have not borne arms against the said United States.

And that persons of any other description shall have free liberty to go to any part or parts of any of the thirteen United States and therein to remain twelve months unmolested in their endeavors to obtain the restitution of such of their estates, rights, and properties as may have been confiscated; and that Congress shall also earnestly recommend to the several states a reconsideration and revision of all acts or laws regarding the premises, so as to render the said laws or acts perfectly consistent not only with justice and equity but with that spirit of conciliation which on the return of the blessings of peace should universally prevail.

And that Congress shall also earnestly recommend to the several states that the estates, rights, and properties, of such last mentioned persons shall be restored to them, they refunding to any persons who may be now in possession the bona fide price (where any has been given) which such persons may have paid on purchasing any of the said lands, rights, or properties since the confiscation.

And it is agreed that all persons who have any interest in confiscated lands, either by debts, marriage settlements, or otherwise, shall meet with no lawful impediment in the prosecution of their just rights.

Article 6th:
That there shall be no future confiscations made nor any prosecutions commenced... and the prosecutions so commenced be discontinued.

Article 7th:
...all hostilities both by sea and land shall from henceforth cease. All prisoners on both sides shall be set at liberty, and his Brittanic Majesty shall with all convenient speed, and without causing any destruction, or carrying away any Negroes or other property of the American inhabitants, withdraw all his armies, garrisons, and fleets from the said United States, and from every post, place, and harbor within the same; leaving in all fortifications, the American artilery that may be therein; and shall also order and cause all archives, records, deeds, and papers belonging to any of the said states, or their citizens, which in the course of the war may have fallen into the hands of his officers, to be forthwith restored and delivered to the proper states and persons to whom they belong.

Article 8th:
The navigation of the river Mississippi, from its source to the ocean, shall forever remain free and open to the subjects of Great Britain and the citizens of the United States.

Article 9th:
In case it should so happen that any place or territory ... conquered by the arms of either from the other before the arrival of the said Provisional Articles in America, it is agreed that the same shall be restored without difficulty and without requiring any compensation.

Article 10th:
The solemn ratifications of the present treaty expedited in good and due form shall be exchanged between the contracting parties in the space of six months or sooner, if possible,...

Done at Paris, this third day of September in the year of our Lord, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three.
D. Hartley
John Adams
B. Franklin
John Jay
--- end excerpts ---

Full text: http://americanhistory.about.com/...utionarywar/a/treaty_of_paris.htm

===

And again, as I've noted in the Constitution writing/debating threads, the central themes and concerns are "the economy," property ownership, financial instruments, regulation of commerce and trade, and balances of power in electing/appointing government decision-makers, in the branches of the federal government, and in the individual States v. United States to insure equitable playing fields for the pursuit of economic happiness.
coebul

Re: Back on track

bieramar wrote:


And again, as I've noted in the Constitution writing/debating threads, the central themes and concerns are "the economy," property ownership, financial instruments, regulation of commerce and trade, and balances of power in electing/appointing government decision-makers, in the branches of the federal government, and in the individual States v. United States to insure equitable playing fields for the pursuit of economic happiness.
Noted but not accepted by many.   As Scrutney has noted in the past and I agree with, the US Constitution is a set of playing rules that sets up our Government and protects specific rights.  

Pursuit of happiness is not in the Constitution and when the framers did include the phrase in the Declaration of Independence little thought was put into the theory of economic happiness.  

The same has happened with the theory of separation of church and state which is not even hinted at in the constitution.  There has been an abuse of Judicial power to read ideas into the document that just are not there.

Allowing one to pursue happiness does not mean as you contend, business must provide a living wage.   Happiness is one of the ambiguous words that can be conscrewed in a multitude of meanings.
bieramar

Constitution and Declaration of Independence

coebul wrote:
As Scrutney has noted in the past and I agree with, the US Constitution is a set of playing rules that sets up our Government and protects specific rights.  

Pursuit of happiness is not in the Constitution and when the framers did include the phrase in the Declaration of Independence little thought was put into the theory of economic happiness.  

The same has happened with the theory of separation of church and state which is not even hinted at in the constitution.  

Happiness is one of the ambiguous words that can be conscrewed in a multitude of meanings.


The framers and debaters and amenders and voters who made the compromises to the wording of the initially submitted drafts of the Declaration and Constitution were full aware of what they meant.

I agree with you and scrutney that the Constitution is a "set of playing rules that sets up our Government and protects specific rights."  

But the questions posed in the introduction to this Forum are who the men were who defined the specific rights? What were their principles and arguments?  Where did they disagree and where did they (most of them) compromise? Which men had which rights? And which men and women didn't?

We already have four threads with links and quotes extensively exploring the answers to all those questions.  My expressed point was/is in re all four of those threads is "the central themes and concerns are 'the economy,' property ownership, financial instruments, regulation of commerce and trade, and balances of power in electing/appointing government decision-makers, in the branches of the federal government, and in the individual States v. United States to insure equitable playing fields
for the pursuit of economic happiness." That I used a phrase reminiscent of the one used in the Declaration doesn't negate the economic rights so torturously argued in the Constitution threads.

What purposes do you think/believe framed the debates and compromises at the 1787 Convention which re-wrote the Constitution, if not economic justice?

The Declaration included ideas in vogue in 1776 - many of which were deleted from the first draft during the debates then as not majority views of the attendees at that convention - and understanding those ideas are necessary to understand the final approved text of the Constitution.

And to understand both documents, the Virginia Declaration of Rights, debated extensively before being passed on June 6, 1776 opens a portal for our understanding of what they thought:

---

I.
That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.

II.
That all power is vested in, and consequently derived from, the people; that magistrates are their trustees and servants, and at all times amenable to them.

III.
That government is, or ought to be, instituted for the common benefit, protection, and security of the people, nation, or community; of all the various modes and forms of government that is best, which is capable of producing the greatest degree of happiness and safety and is most effectually secured against the danger of maladministration; and that, whenever any government shall be found inadequate or contrary to these purposes, a majority of the community hath an indubitable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to reform, alter, or abolish it, in such manner as shall be judged most conducive to the public weal.

IV.
That no man, or set of men, are entitled to exclusive or separate emoluments or privileges from the community, but in consideration of public services; which, not being descendible, neither ought the offices of magistrate, legislator, or judge to be hereditary.

V.
That the legislative and executive powers of the state should be separate and distinct from the judicative; and, that the members of the two first may be restrained from oppression by feeling and participating the burthens of the people, they should, at fixed periods, be reduced to a private station, return into that body from which they were originally taken, and the vacancies be supplied by frequent, certain, and regular elections in which all, or any part of the former members, to be again eligible, or ineligible, as the laws shall direct.

VI.
That elections of members to serve as representatives of the people in assembly ought to be free; and that all men, having sufficient evidence of permanent common interest with, and attachment to, the community have the right of suffrage and cannot be taxed or deprived of their property for public uses without their own consent or that of their representatives so elected, nor bound by any law to which they have not, in like manner, assented, for the public good.

VII.
That all power of suspending laws, or the execution of laws, by any authority without consent of the representatives of the people is injurious to their rights and ought not to be exercised.

VIII.
That in all capital or criminal prosecutions a man hath a right to demand the cause and nature of his accusation to be confronted with the accusers and witnesses, to call for evidence in his favor, and to a speedy trial by an impartial jury of his vicinage, without whose unanimous consent he cannot be found guilty, nor can he be compelled to give evidence against himself; that no man be deprived of his liberty except by the law of the land or the judgment of his peers.

IX.
That excessive bail ought not to be required, nor excessive fines imposed; nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

X.
That general warrants, whereby any officer or messenger may be commanded to search suspected places without evidence of a fact committed, or to seize any person or persons not named, or whose offense is not particularly described and supported by evidence, are grievous and oppressive and ought not be granted.

XI.
That in controversies respecting property and in suits between man and man, the ancient trial by jury is preferable to any other and ought to be held sacred.

XII.
That the freedom of the press is one of the greatest bulwarks of liberty and can never be restrained but by despotic governments.

XIII.
That a well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the proper, natural, and safe defense of a free state; that standing armies, in time of peace, should be avoided as dangerous to liberty; and that, in all cases, the military should be under strict subordination to, and governed by, the civil power.

XIV.
That the people have a right to uniform government; and therefore, that no government separate from, or independent of, the government of Virginia, ought to be erected or established within the limits thereof.

XV.
That no free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue and by frequent recurrence to fundamental principles.

XVI.
That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and therefore, all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience; and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity towards each other.
--- end ---

All of these ideas and beliefs were raised - and re-argued - during the 1787 arguments which we are addressing in the separate Constitution threads.  Some were compromised out, some rejected as not reflective of the majority views, some rejected as pragmatically impossible because of the differing beliefs by the representatives of different States.

But all were considered to be parts of the intellectual quilt of the Constitution which finally was sewn.
coebul

Thank you for the recap of what was written and your interpretations.  

Quote:
the Virginia Declaration of Rights, debated extensively before being passed on June 6, 1776 opens a portal for our understanding of what they thought:


One state one set of thoughts.  Jefferson (the author/writer) had several thoughts on the Declaration of Independence but was not part of the US Constitution he was in France at the time.  Some point out that he had several correspondences with Madison (one of the authors) but in the day of months between mail from Europe and USA one wonders how much input Jefferson actually had.  

Another point you should consider, the US Constitution use the Mass Constitution as a pattern.  John Adams had significant input into this document.  

Quote:
they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.
Except for Slaves that is.  bieramar you can't actually believe these intellectuals gave diddely about the peasant working class.  

By the way I was raised in VA and studied it's politics for most of my life until and through college and since to a lesser degree.
bieramar

Federalist Five - Jay writing as Publius

Federalist no. 5

The Same Subject Continued (Concerning Dangers From Foreign Force and Influence)
Jay for the Independent Journal.
To the People of the State of New York:

QUEEN ANNE, in her letter of the 1st July, 1706, to the Scotch Parliament, makes some observations on the importance of the UNION then forming between England and Scotland, which merit our attention. I shall present the public with one or two extracts from it:
"An entire and perfect union will be the solid foundation of lasting peace: It will secure your religion, liberty, and property; remove the animosities amongst yourselves, and the jealousies and differences betwixt our two kingdoms. It must increase your strength, riches, and trade; and by this union the whole island, being joined in affection and free from all apprehensions of different interest, will be enabled to resist all its enemies."
"We most earnestly recommend to you calmness and unanimity in this great and weighty affair, that the union may be brought to a happy conclusion, being the only effectual way to secure our present and future happiness, and disappoint the designs of our and your enemies, who will doubtless, on this occasion, use their utmost endeavors to prevent or delay this union."

It was remarked in the preceding paper, that weakness and divisions at home would invite dangers from abroad; and that nothing would tend more to secure us from them than union, strength, and good government within ourselves. This subject is copious and cannot easily be exhausted.

The history of Great Britain is the one with which we are in general the best acquainted, and it gives us many useful lessons. We may profit by their experience without paying the price which it cost them. Although it seems obvious to common sense that the people of such an island should be but one nation, yet we find that they were for ages divided into three, and that those three were almost constantly embroiled in quarrels and wars with one another.

Notwithstanding their true interest with respect to the continental nations was really the same, yet by the arts and policy and practices of those nations, their mutual jealousies were perpetually kept inflamed, and for a long series of years they were far more inconvenient and troublesome than they were useful and assisting to each other.

Should the people of America divide themselves into three or four nations, would not the same thing happen? Would not similar jealousies arise, and be in like manner cherished? Instead of their being "joined in affection" and free from all apprehension of different "interests," envy and jealousy would soon extinguish confidence and affection, and the partial interests of each confederacy, instead of the general interests of all America, would be the only objects of their policy and pursuits. Hence, like most other bordering nations, they would always be either involved in disputes and war, or live in the constant apprehension of them.

The most sanguine advocates for three or four confederacies cannot reasonably suppose that they would long remain exactly on an equal footing in point of strength, even if it was possible to form them so at first; but, admitting that to be practicable, yet what human contrivance can secure the continuance of such equality?

Independent of those local circumstances which tend to beget and increase power in one part and to impede its progress in another, we must advert to the effects of that superior policy and good management which would probably distinguish the government of one above the rest, and by which their relative equality in strength and consideration would be destroyed.

For it cannot be presumed that the same degree of sound policy, prudence, and foresight would uniformly be observed by each of these confederacies for a long succession of years.

Whenever, and from whatever causes, it might happen, and happen it would, that any one of these nations or confederacies should rise on the scale of political importance much above the degree of her neighbors, that moment would those neighbors behold her with envy and with fear. Both those passions would lead them to countenance, if not to promote, whatever might promise to diminish her importance; and would also restrain them from measures calculated to advance or even to secure her prosperity. Much time would not be necessary to enable her to discern these unfriendly dispositions. She would soon begin, not only to lose confidence in her neighbors, but also to feel a disposition equally unfavorable to them. Distrust naturally creates distrust, and by nothing is good-will and kind conduct more speedily changed than by invidious jealousies and uncandid imputations, whether expressed or implied.

The North is generally the region of strength, and many local circumstances render it probable that the most Northern of the proposed confederacies would, at a period not very distant, be unquestionably more formidable than any of the others. No sooner would this become evident than the northern hive would excite the same ideas and sensations in the more southern parts of America which it formerly did in the southern parts of Europe. Nor does it appear to be a rash conjecture that its young swarms might often be tempted to gather honey in the more blooming fields and milder air of their luxurious and more delicate neighbors.

They who well consider the history of similar divisions and confederacies will find abundant reason to apprehend that those in contemplation would in no other sense be neighbors than as they would be borderers; that they would neither love nor trust one another, but on the contrary would be a prey to discord, jealousy, and mutual injuries; in short, that they would place us exactly in the situations in which some nations doubtless wish to see us, viz., formidable only to each other.

From these considerations it appears that those gentlemen are greatly mistaken who suppose that alliances offensive and defensive might be formed between these confederacies, and would produce that combination and union of wills of arms and of resources, which would be necessary to put and keep them in a formidable state of defense against foreign enemies.

When did the independent states, into which Britain and Spain were formerly divided, combine in such alliance, or unite their forces against a foreign enemy? The proposed confederacies will be distinct nations. Each of them would have its commerce with foreigners to regulate by distinct treaties; and as their productions and commodities are different and proper for different markets, so would those treaties be essentially different. Different commercial concerns must create different interests, and of course different degrees of political attachment to and connection with different foreign nations. Hence it might and probably would happen that the foreign nation with whom the southern confederacy might be at war would be the one with whom the northern confederacy would be the most desirous of preserving peace and friendship. An alliance so contrary to their immediate interest would not therefore be easy to form, nor, if formed, would it be observed and fulfilled with perfect good faith.

Nay, it is far more probable that in America, as in Europe, neighboring nations, acting under the impulse of opposite interests and unfriendly passions, would frequently be found taking different sides. Considering our distance from Europe, it would be more natural for these confederacies to apprehend danger from one another than from distant nations, and therefore that each of them should be more desirous to guard against the others by the aid of foreign alliances, than to guard against foreign dangers by alliances between themselves. And here let us not forget how much more easy it is to receive foreign fleets into our ports, and foreign armies into our country, than it is to persuade or compel them to depart. How many conquests did the Romans and others make in the characters of allies, and what innovations did they under the same character introduce into the governments of those whom they pretended to protect.

Let candid men judge, then, whether the division of America into any given number of independent sovereignties would tend to secure us against the hostilities and improper interference of foreign nations.

Publius
bieramar

Remember that Jay's Federalist Papers 2 thru 5 (previously posted here) were arguments to convince voters to ratify the Constitution, as its wording about Armies, Navies, militias and respective powers had been approved and published by the Constitutional Convention in September 1787.

The arguments on these matters of defense in the Convention began on May 29th, the 2nd day after the rules of debate were approved, and intermittently appeared during the following months.  But it wasn't until August 17th that formal questions were raised and votes taken.

It wasn't just defense against foreign nations on/across the seas that was of concern. It was also defense against civil insurrection (like Shay's Rebellion the year before), and Indian attacks on the frontiers.

Most of the delegates had either fought in the Revolutionary War, or were in state or federal congresses during it - or both/all - so their existential experiences were debated, not theories.  They all came to the Convention with the shared idea that local, state and national security was the primary reason for government (governing the negative attributes of human nature), and they all acknowledged the flaws of the Confederation and the Continental Army.  They all hated military dictatorships.

Both the Virginia and Pinckney Plans (see the "Process" thread) pushed for federal authority over defenses against international and domestic threats. A regular Army and Navy was needed to avoid the economic disruption caused when the citizen militia was called to fight, as happened during the Revolutionary War.

Then on August 17, challenges were made to the clauses in Article I which enumerated the powers of the federal government (as posted in the other threads).

An example from the Convention diary of August 17th illustrates the deliberative process:
----
ISSUE
"To subdue a rebellion in any State, on the application of its legislature."  

Mr. PINKNEY moved to strike out "on the application of its legislature"
Mr. Govr. MORRIS 2ds.
Mr. L. MARTIN opposed it as giving a dangerous & unnecessary power. The consent of the State ought to precede the introduction of any extraneous force whatever.
Mr. MERCER supported the opposition of Mr. Martin.
Mr. ELSEWORTH proposed to add after "legislature" "or Executive."
Mr. Govr. MORRIS. The Executive may possibly be at the head of the Rebellion. The Genl. Govt. should enforce obedience in all cases where it may be necessary.
Mr. ELSEWORTH. In many cases The Genl. Govt. ought not to be able to interpose, unless called upon. He was willing to vary his motion so as to read, "or without it when the legislature cannot meet."
Mr. GERRY was agst. letting loose the myrmidons of the U. States on a State without its own consent. The States will be the best Judges in such cases. More blood would have been spilt in Massts. in the late insurrection, if the Genl. authority had intermeddled.
Mr. LANGDON was for striking out as moved by Mr. Pinkney. The apprehension of the national force, will have a salutary effect in preventing insurrections.
Mr. RANDOLPH. If the Natl. Legislature is to judge whether the State legislature can or cannot meet, that amendment would make the clause as objectionable as the motion of Mr. Pinkney.
Mr. Govr. MORRIS. We are acting a very strange part. We first form a strong man to protect us, and at the same time wish to tie his hands behind him, The legislature may surely be trusted with such a power to preserve the public tranquility.

On the motion to add "or without it [application] when the legislature cannot meet"  
N. H. ay. Mas. no. Ct. ay. Pa. divd. Del. no. Md. no. Va. ay. N. C. divd. S. C. ay. Geo. ay.  So agreed to-

Mr. MADISON and Mr. DICKENSON moved to insert as explanatory, after "State"- "against the Government thereof" There might be a rebellion agst. the U. States-which was Agreed to nem. con.

On the clause as amended N. H. ay. Mas  abst. Ct. ay. Pen. abst. Del. no. Md. no. Va. ay. N. C. no. S. C. no. Georg. ay-so it was lost.
---

A second debate on the same day, was on the power "to make war."  Debate summaries from the Diary are here:
Source: http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/debates_817.asp

The next day the "standing Army" rhetoric raised the hackles of Washington and the Revolutionary War veterans, and the "Militia Clause" got everyone involved, so the matter was sent to committee.
http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/debates_818.asp

The committee reported out a compromised balance of power clause with the federal government instituting "laws for organizing, arming, and disciplining the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States, reserving to the states respectively the appointment of officers and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by the United States."

On August 20 the delegates began debating the merits and flaws of militias and armies - must reads for anyone who wants to understand how those Founders viewed Militias; later after the Constitution was ratified to be raised again as the proposed 2nd Amendment was sent to the States for separate ratification: http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/debates_820.asp
http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/debates_821.asp
http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/debates_822.asp


On August 23 the final votes on military matters were taken.
http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/debates_823.asp


As ratified, the Constitution addresses military defense matters at Article I, Sections 6, 7, 8 and 10, and Article II, Section 2.  The Army, Navy, and Militia are structured with checks and balances - the federal "standing Army" regular military for immediate defense checked by civilian control, 2-year maximum funding from the House, and senior officer approval by the Senate; and balanced also by states appointing the officers and training the Militia for their (the States') own purposes and for the federal "reserves."
scrutney

whoops...sorry.
i thought i had already posted feds #5.
i've read it recently (in the past 3 or 4 days) so the only possible reason that i can think of that kept me from posting it was...i got distracted.
1 wife
2 kids.
3 cats.
no living room furniture.
taking down the christmas tree.
busy busy busy.
just sayin'.
scrutney

federalist # 6:
(scrut): ya can't trust anyone.
but you definitely can't trust the dutch:




Concerning Dangers from Dissensions Between the States
For the Independent Journal.
HAMILTON  

To the People of the State of New York:

THE three last numbers of this paper have been dedicated to an enumeration of the dangers to which we should be exposed, in a state of disunion, from the arms and arts of foreign nations. I shall now proceed to delineate dangers of a different and, perhaps, still more alarming kind--those which will in all probability flow from dissensions between the States themselves, and from domestic factions and convulsions. These have been already in some instances slightly anticipated; but they deserve a more particular and more full investigation.

A man must be far gone in Utopian speculations who can seriously doubt that, if these States should either be wholly disunited, or only united in partial confederacies, the subdivisions into which they might be thrown would have frequent and violent contests with each other. To presume a want of motives for such contests as an argument against their existence, would be to forget that men are ambitious, vindictive, and rapacious. To look for a continuation of harmony between a number of independent, unconnected sovereignties in the same neighborhood, would be to disregard the uniform course of human events, and to set at defiance the accumulated experience of ages.

The causes of hostility among nations are innumerable. There are some which have a general and almost constant operation upon the collective bodies of society. Of this description are the love of power or the desire of pre-eminence and dominion--the jealousy of power, or the desire of equality and safety. There are others which have a more circumscribed though an equally operative influence within their spheres. Such are the rivalships and competitions of commerce between commercial nations. And there are others, not less numerous than either of the former, which take their origin entirely in private passions; in the attachments, enmities, interests, hopes, and fears of leading individuals in the communities of which they are members. Men of this class, whether the favorites of a king or of a people, have in too many instances abused the confidence they possessed; and assuming the pretext of some public motive, have not scrupled to sacrifice the national tranquillity to personal advantage or personal gratification.

The celebrated Pericles, in compliance with the resentment of a prostitute,1 at the expense of much of the blood and treasure of his countrymen, attacked, vanquished, and destroyed the city of the SAMNIANS. The same man, stimulated by private pique against the MEGARENSIANS,2 another nation of Greece, or to avoid a prosecution with which he was threatened as an accomplice of a supposed theft of the statuary Phidias,3 or to get rid of the accusations prepared to be brought against him for dissipating the funds of the state in the purchase of popularity,4 or from a combination of all these causes, was the primitive author of that famous and fatal war, distinguished in the Grecian annals by the name of the PELOPONNESIAN war; which, after various vicissitudes, intermissions, and renewals, terminated in the ruin of the Athenian commonwealth.

The ambitious cardinal, who was prime minister to Henry VIII., permitting his vanity to aspire to the triple crown,5 entertained hopes of succeeding in the acquisition of that splendid prize by the influence of the Emperor Charles V. To secure the favor and interest of this enterprising and powerful monarch, he precipitated England into a war with France, contrary to the plainest dictates of policy, and at the hazard of the safety and independence, as well of the kingdom over which he presided by his counsels, as of Europe in general. For if there ever was a sovereign who bid fair to realize the project of universal monarchy, it was the Emperor Charles V., of whose intrigues Wolsey was at once the instrument and the dupe.

The influence which the bigotry of one female,6 the petulance of another,7 and the cabals of a third,8 had in the contemporary policy, ferments, and pacifications, of a considerable part of Europe, are topics that have been too often descanted upon not to be generally known.

To multiply examples of the agency of personal considerations in the production of great national events, either foreign or domestic, according to their direction, would be an unnecessary waste of time. Those who have but a superficial acquaintance with the sources from which they are to be drawn, will themselves recollect a variety of instances; and those who have a tolerable knowledge of human nature will not stand in need of such lights to form their opinion either of the reality or extent of that agency. Perhaps, however, a reference, tending to illustrate the general principle, may with propriety be made to a case which has lately happened among ourselves. If Shays had not been a DESPERATE DEBTOR, it is much to be doubted whether Massachusetts would have been plunged into a civil war.

But notwithstanding the concurring testimony of experience, in this particular, there are still to be found visionary or designing men, who stand ready to advocate the paradox of perpetual peace between the States, though dismembered and alienated from each other. The genius of republics (say they) is pacific; the spirit of commerce has a tendency to soften the manners of men, and to extinguish those inflammable humors which have so often kindled into wars. Commercial republics, like ours, will never be disposed to waste themselves in ruinous contentions with each other. They will be governed by mutual interest, and will cultivate a spirit of mutual amity and concord.

Is it not (we may ask these projectors in politics) the true interest of all nations to cultivate the same benevolent and philosophic spirit? If this be their true interest, have they in fact pursued it? Has it not, on the contrary, invariably been found that momentary passions, and immediate interest, have a more active and imperious control over human conduct than general or remote considerations of policy, utility or justice? Have republics in practice been less addicted to war than monarchies? Are not the former administered by MEN as well as the latter? Are there not aversions, predilections, rivalships, and desires of unjust acquisitions, that affect nations as well as kings? Are not popular assemblies frequently subject to the impulses of rage, resentment, jealousy, avarice, and of other irregular and violent propensities? Is it not well known that their determinations are often governed by a few individuals in whom they place confidence, and are, of course, liable to be tinctured by the passions and views of those individuals? Has commerce hitherto done anything more than change the objects of war? Is not the love of wealth as domineering and enterprising a passion as that of power or glory? Have there not been as many wars founded upon commercial motives since that has become the prevailing system of nations, as were before occasioned by the cupidity of territory or dominion? Has not the spirit of commerce, in many instances, administered new incentives to the appetite, both for the one and for the other? Let experience, the least fallible guide of human opinions, be appealed to for an answer to these inquiries.

Sparta, Athens, Rome, and Carthage were all republics; two of them, Athens and Carthage, of the commercial kind. Yet were they as often engaged in wars, offensive and defensive, as the neighboring monarchies of the same times. Sparta was little better than a wellregulated camp; and Rome was never sated of carnage and conquest.

Carthage, though a commercial republic, was the aggressor in the very war that ended in her destruction. Hannibal had carried her arms into the heart of Italy and to the gates of Rome, before Scipio, in turn, gave him an overthrow in the territories of Carthage, and made a conquest of the commonwealth.

Venice, in later times, figured more than once in wars of ambition, till, becoming an object to the other Italian states, Pope Julius II. found means to accomplish that formidable league,9 which gave a deadly blow to the power and pride of this haughty republic.

The provinces of Holland, till they were overwhelmed in debts and taxes, took a leading and conspicuous part in the wars of Europe. They had furious contests with England for the dominion of the sea, and were among the most persevering and most implacable of the opponents of Louis XIV.

In the government of Britain the representatives of the people compose one branch of the national legislature. Commerce has been for ages the predominant pursuit of that country. Few nations, nevertheless, have been more frequently engaged in war; and the wars in which that kingdom has been engaged have, in numerous instances, proceeded from the people.

There have been, if I may so express it, almost as many popular as royal wars. The cries of the nation and the importunities of their representatives have, upon various occasions, dragged their monarchs into war, or continued them in it, contrary to their inclinations, and sometimes contrary to the real interests of the State. In that memorable struggle for superiority between the rival houses of AUSTRIA and BOURBON, which so long kept Europe in a flame, it is well known that the antipathies of the English against the French, seconding the ambition, or rather the avarice, of a favorite leader,10 protracted the war beyond the limits marked out by sound policy, and for a considerable time in opposition to the views of the court.

The wars of these two last-mentioned nations have in a great measure grown out of commercial considerations,--the desire of supplanting and the fear of being supplanted, either in particular branches of traffic or in the general advantages of trade and navigation.

From this summary of what has taken place in other countries, whose situations have borne the nearest resemblance to our own, what reason can we have to confide in those reveries which would seduce us into an expectation of peace and cordiality between the members of the present confederacy, in a state of separation? Have we not already seen enough of the fallacy and extravagance of those idle theories which have amused us with promises of an exemption from the imperfections, weaknesses and evils incident to society in every shape? Is it not time to awake from the deceitful dream of a golden age, and to adopt as a practical maxim for the direction of our political conduct that we, as well as the other inhabitants of the globe, are yet remote from the happy empire of perfect wisdom and perfect virtue?

Let the point of extreme depression to which our national dignity and credit have sunk, let the inconveniences felt everywhere from a lax and ill administration of government, let the revolt of a part of the State of North Carolina, the late menacing disturbances in Pennsylvania, and the actual insurrections and rebellions in Massachusetts, declare--!

So far is the general sense of mankind from corresponding with the tenets of those who endeavor to lull asleep our apprehensions of discord and hostility between the States, in the event of disunion, that it has from long observation of the progress of society become a sort of axiom in politics, that vicinity or nearness of situation, constitutes nations natural enemies. An intelligent writer expresses himself on this subject to this effect: "NEIGHBORING NATIONS (says he) are naturally enemies of each other unless their common weakness forces them to league in a CONFEDERATE REPUBLIC, and their constitution prevents the differences that neighborhood occasions, extinguishing that secret jealousy which disposes all states to aggrandize themselves at the expense of their neighbors.''11 This passage, at the same time, points out the EVIL and suggests the REMEDY.

PUBLIUS.


1 Aspasia, vide "Plutarch's Life of Pericles.''
2 Ibid.
3 Ibid.
4 Ibid. Phidias was supposed to have stolen some public gold, with the connivance of Pericles, for the embellishment of the statue of Minerva.
5 P Worn by the popes.
6 Madame de Maintenon.
7 Duchess of Marlborough.
8 Madame de Pompadour.
9 The League of Cambray, comprehending the Emperor, the King of France, the King of Aragon, and most of the Italian princes and states.
10 The Duke of Marlborough.
11 Vide "Principes des Negociations'' par 1'Abbe de Mably.

edited to add the link to the perennial publius commentary # 6
scrutney

federalist # 7:

The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning Dangers from Dissensions Between the States

For the Independent Journal.
HAMILTON  

To the People of the State of New York:

IT IS sometimes asked, with an air of seeming triumph, what inducements could the States have, if disunited, to make war upon each other? It would be a full answer to this question to say--precisely the same inducements which have, at different times, deluged in blood all the nations in the world. But, unfortunately for us, the question admits of a more particular answer. There are causes of differences within our immediate contemplation, of the tendency of which, even under the restraints of a federal constitution, we have had sufficient experience to enable us to form a judgment of what might be expected if those restraints were removed.

Territorial disputes have at all times been found one of the most fertile sources of hostility among nations. Perhaps the greatest proportion of wars that have desolated the earth have sprung from this origin. This cause would exist among us in full force. We have a vast tract of unsettled territory within the boundaries of the United States. There still are discordant and undecided claims between several of them, and the dissolution of the Union would lay a foundation for similar claims between them all. It is well known that they have heretofore had serious and animated discussion concerning the rights to the lands which were ungranted at the time of the Revolution, and which usually went under the name of crown lands. The States within the limits of whose colonial governments they were comprised have claimed them as their property, the others have contended that the rights of the crown in this article devolved upon the Union; especially as to all that part of the Western territory which, either by actual possession, or through the submission of the Indian proprietors, was subjected to the jurisdiction of the king of Great Britain, till it was relinquished in the treaty of peace. This, it has been said, was at all events an acquisition to the Confederacy by compact with a foreign power. It has been the prudent policy of Congress to appease this controversy, by prevailing upon the States to make cessions to the United States for the benefit of the whole. This has been so far accomplished as, under a continuation of the Union, to afford a decided prospect of an amicable termination of the dispute. A dismemberment of the Confederacy, however, would revive this dispute, and would create others on the same subject. At present, a large part of the vacant Western territory is, by cession at least, if not by any anterior right, the common property of the Union. If that were at an end, the States which made the cession, on a principle of federal compromise, would be apt when the motive of the grant had ceased, to reclaim the lands as a reversion. The other States would no doubt insist on a proportion, by right of representation. Their argument would be, that a grant, once made, could not be revoked; and that the justice of participating in territory acquired or secured by the joint efforts of the Confederacy, remained undiminished. If, contrary to probability, it should be admitted by all the States, that each had a right to a share of this common stock, there would still be a difficulty to be surmounted, as to a proper rule of apportionment. Different principles would be set up by different States for this purpose; and as they would affect the opposite interests of the parties, they might not easily be susceptible of a pacific adjustment.

In the wide field of Western territory, therefore, we perceive an ample theatre for hostile pretensions, without any umpire or common judge to interpose between the contending parties. To reason from the past to the future, we shall have good ground to apprehend, that the sword would sometimes be appealed to as the arbiter of their differences. The circumstances of the dispute between Connecticut and Pennsylvania, respecting the land at Wyoming, admonish us not to be sanguine in expecting an easy accommodation of such differences. The articles of confederation obliged the parties to submit the matter to the decision of a federal court. The submission was made, and the court decided in favor of Pennsylvania. But Connecticut gave strong indications of dissatisfaction with that determination; nor did she appear to be entirely resigned to it, till, by negotiation and management, something like an equivalent was found for the loss she supposed herself to have sustained. Nothing here said is intended to convey the slightest censure on the conduct of that State. She no doubt sincerely believed herself to have been injured by the decision; and States, like individuals, acquiesce with great reluctance in determinations to their disadvantage.

Those who had an opportunity of seeing the inside of the transactions which attended the progress of the controversy between this State and the district of Vermont, can vouch the opposition we experienced, as well from States not interested as from those which were interested in the claim; and can attest the danger to which the peace of the Confederacy might have been exposed, had this State attempted to assert its rights by force. Two motives preponderated in that opposition: one, a jealousy entertained of our future power; and the other, the interest of certain individuals of influence in the neighboring States, who had obtained grants of lands under the actual government of that district. Even the States which brought forward claims, in contradiction to ours, seemed more solicitous to dismember this State, than to establish their own pretensions. These were New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. New Jersey and Rhode Island, upon all occasions, discovered a warm zeal for the independence of Vermont; and Maryland, till alarmed by the appearance of a connection between Canada and that State, entered deeply into the same views. These being small States, saw with an unfriendly eye the perspective of our growing greatness. In a review of these transactions we may trace some of the causes which would be likely to embroil the States with each other, if it should be their unpropitious destiny to become disunited.

The competitions of commerce would be another fruitful source of contention. The States less favorably circumstanced would be desirous of escaping from the disadvantages of local situation, and of sharing in the advantages of their more fortunate neighbors. Each State, or separate confederacy, would pursue a system of commercial policy peculiar to itself. This would occasion distinctions, preferences, and exclusions, which would beget discontent. The habits of intercourse, on the basis of equal privileges, to which we have been accustomed since the earliest settlement of the country, would give a keener edge to those causes of discontent than they would naturally have independent of this circumstance. WE SHOULD BE READY TO DENOMINATE INJURIES THOSE THINGS WHICH WERE IN REALITY THE JUSTIFIABLE ACTS OF INDEPENDENT SOVEREIGNTIES CONSULTING A DISTINCT INTEREST. The spirit of enterprise, which characterizes the commercial part of America, has left no occasion of displaying itself unimproved. It is not at all probable that this unbridled spirit would pay much respect to those regulations of trade by which particular States might endeavor to secure exclusive benefits to their own citizens. The infractions of these regulations, on one side, the efforts to prevent and repel them, on the other, would naturally lead to outrages, and these to reprisals and wars.

The opportunities which some States would have of rendering others tributary to them by commercial regulations would be impatiently submitted to by the tributary States. The relative situation of New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey would afford an example of this kind. New York, from the necessities of revenue, must lay duties on her importations. A great part of these duties must be paid by the inhabitants of the two other States in the capacity of consumers of what we import. New York would neither be willing nor able to forego this advantage. Her citizens would not consent that a duty paid by them should be remitted in favor of the citizens of her neighbors; nor would it be practicable, if there were not this impediment in the way, to distinguish the customers in our own markets. Would Connecticut and New Jersey long submit to be taxed by New York for her exclusive benefit? Should we be long permitted to remain in the quiet and undisturbed enjoyment of a metropolis, from the possession of which we derived an advantage so odious to our neighbors, and, in their opinion, so oppressive? Should we be able to preserve it against the incumbent weight of Connecticut on the one side, and the co-operating pressure of New Jersey on the other? These are questions that temerity alone will answer in the affirmative.

The public debt of the Union would be a further cause of collision between the separate States or confederacies. The apportionment, in the first instance, and the progressive extinguishment afterward, would be alike productive of ill-humor and animosity. How would it be possible to agree upon a rule of apportionment satisfactory to all? There is scarcely any that can be proposed which is entirely free from real objections. These, as usual, would be exaggerated by the adverse interest of the parties. There are even dissimilar views among the States as to the general principle of discharging the public debt. Some of them, either less impressed with the importance of national credit, or because their citizens have little, if any, immediate interest in the question, feel an indifference, if not a repugnance, to the payment of the domestic debt at any rate. These would be inclined to magnify the difficulties of a distribution. Others of them, a numerous body of whose citizens are creditors to the public beyond proportion of the State in the total amount of the national debt, would be strenuous for some equitable and effective provision. The procrastinations of the former would excite the resentments of the latter. The settlement of a rule would, in the meantime, be postponed by real differences of opinion and affected delays. The citizens of the States interested would clamour; foreign powers would urge for the satisfaction of their just demands, and the peace of the States would be hazarded to the double contingency of external invasion and internal contention.

Suppose the difficulties of agreeing upon a rule surmounted, and the apportionment made. Still there is great room to suppose that the rule agreed upon would, upon experiment, be found to bear harder upon some States than upon others. Those which were sufferers by it would naturally seek for a mitigation of the burden. The others would as naturally be disinclined to a revision, which was likely to end in an increase of their own incumbrances. Their refusal would be too plausible a pretext to the complaining States to withhold their contributions, not to be embraced with avidity; and the non-compliance of these States with their engagements would be a ground of bitter discussion and altercation. If even the rule adopted should in practice justify the equality of its principle, still delinquencies in payments on the part of some of the States would result from a diversity of other causes--the real deficiency of resources; the mismanagement of their finances; accidental disorders in the management of the government; and, in addition to the rest, the reluctance with which men commonly part with money for purposes that have outlived the exigencies which produced them, and interfere with the supply of immediate wants. Delinquencies, from whatever causes, would be productive of complaints, recriminations, and quarrels. There is, perhaps, nothing more likely to disturb the tranquillity of nations than their being bound to mutual contributions for any common object that does not yield an equal and coincident benefit. For it is an observation, as true as it is trite, that there is nothing men differ so readily about as the payment of money.

Laws in violation of private contracts, as they amount to aggressions on the rights of those States whose citizens are injured by them, may be considered as another probable source of hostility. We are not authorized to expect that a more liberal or more equitable spirit would preside over the legislations of the individual States hereafter, if unrestrained by any additional checks, than we have heretofore seen in too many instances disgracing their several codes. We have observed the disposition to retaliation excited in Connecticut in consequence of the enormities perpetrated by the Legislature of Rhode Island; and we reasonably infer that, in similar cases, under other circumstances, a war, not of PARCHMENT, but of the sword, would chastise such atrocious breaches of moral obligation and social justice.

The probability of incompatible alliances between the different States or confederacies and different foreign nations, and the effects of this situation upon the peace of the whole, have been sufficiently unfolded in some preceding papers. From the view they have exhibited of this part of the subject, this conclusion is to be drawn, that America, if not connected at all, or only by the feeble tie of a simple league, offensive and defensive, would, by the operation of such jarring alliances, be gradually entangled in all the pernicious labyrinths of European politics and wars; and by the destructive contentions of the parts into which she was divided, would be likely to become a prey to the artifices and machinations of powers equally the enemies of them all. Divide et impera1 must be the motto of every nation that either hates or fears us.

PUBLIUS.

1 Divide and command.

2 In order that the whole subject of these papers may as soon as possible be laid before the public, it is proposed to publish them four times a week--on Tuesday in the New York Packet and on Thursday in the Daily Advertiser.


commentary on federalists # 7... the perennial publius
bieramar

Although presented as a defense of federalism, Federalist 6 and 7 should be required reading before any debate or conversation about the reasons for the Revolution, the declarations of Rights, and the central themes that runs through every Founders' document and debate.

From the first inalienable Right to "life, liberty and property" in 1774, through the Constitution, and the First Congress after the Constitution, the major themes are
the cupidity of man, the need for governing greed and powermongers, and the equal opportunity under the laws for acquiring property and wealth, including but not limited to the fishery seas of the North Atlantic and the federal lands west to the Mississippi.

In comparing Madison's 1778 writings to his arguments the year before in the Constitutional Convention one can see his inclusion of his refined arguments honed by the logic and philosophies presented during the debates and writing of the Constitution.

The principle of "It's the economy, stupid" was not a 20th century invention.
bieramar

Continuation of last entry

Madison had been disappointed earlier in his attempts to address the United States' role in trade and commerce when only five States responded to his call in 1786 to attend a Convention in Maryland.

---
The Annapolis Convention
Sept. 14, 1786

Proceedings of the Commissioners to Remedy Defects of the Federal Government, Annapolis in the State of Maryland. September 14, 1786.

To the Honorable, The Legislatures of Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York - assembled at Annapolis, humbly beg leave to report.

That, pursuant to their several appointments, they met, at Annapolis in the State of Maryland on the eleventh day of September Instant, and having proceeded to a Communication of their Powers; they found that the States of New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, had, in substance, and nearly in the same terms, authorized their respective Commissions "to meet such other Commissioners as were, or might be, appointed by the other States in the Union, at such time and place as should be agreed upon by the said Commissions to take into consideration the trade and commerce of the United States, to consider how far a uniform system in their commercial intercourse and regulations might be necessary to their common interest and permanent harmony, and to report to the several States such an Act, relative to this great object, as when unanimously by them would enable the United States in Congress assembled effectually to proved for the same."...

That the State of New Jersey had enlarged the object of their appointment, empowering their Commissioners, "to consider how far a uniform system in their commercial regulations and other important matters, mighty be necessary to the common interest and permanent harmony of the several States," and to report such an Act on the subject, as when ratified by them, "would enable the United States in Congress assembled, effectually to provide for the exigencies of the Union."

That appointments of Commissioners have also been made by the States of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and North Carolina, none of whom, however, have attended; but that no information has been received by your Commissioners, of any appointment having been made by the States of Connecticut, Maryland, South Carolina or Georgia.

That the express terms of the powers of your Commissioners supposing a deputation from all the States, and having for object the Trade and Commerce of the United States, Your Commissioners did not conceive it advisable to proceed on the business of their mission, under the Circumstances of so partial and defective a representation.

Deeply impressed, however, with the magnitude and importance of the object confided to them on this occasion, your Commissioners cannot forbear to indulge an expression of their earnest and unanimous wish, that speedy measures be taken, to effect a general meeting, of the States, in a future Convention, for the same, and such other purposes, as the situation of public affairs may be found to require.

If in expressing this wish, or in intimating any other sentiment, your Commissioners should seem to exceed the strict bounds of their appointment, they entertain a full confidence, that a conduct, dictated by an anxiety for the welfare of the United States, will not fail to receive an indulgent construction.

In this persuasion, your Commissioners submit an opinion, that the Idea of extending the powers of their Deputies, to other objects, than those of Commerce, which has been adopted by the State of New Jersey, was an improvement on the original plan, and will deserve to be incorporated into that of a future Convention; they are the more naturally led to this conclusion, as in the course of their reflections on the subject, they have been induced to think, that the power of regulating trade is of such comprehensive extent, and will enter so far into the general System of the federal government, that to give it efficacy, and to obviate questions and doubts concerning its precise nature and limits, may require a correspondent adjustment of other parts of the Federal System.

That there are important defects in the system of the Federal Government is acknowledged by the Acts of all those States, which have concurred in the present Meeting; That the defects, upon a closer examination, may be found greater and more numerous, than even these acts imply, is at least so far probably, from the embarrassments which characterize the present State of our national affairs, foreign and domestic, as may reasonably be supposed to merit a deliberate and candid discussion, in some mode, which will unite the Sentiments and Councils of all the States. In the choice of the mode, your Commissioners are of opinion, that a Convention of Deputies from the different States, for the special and sole purpose of entering into this investigation, and digesting a plan for supplying such defects as may be discovered to exist, will be entitled to a preference from considerations, which will occur without being particularized.

Your Commissioners decline an enumeration of those national circumstances on which their opinion respecting the propriety of a future Convention, with more enlarged powers, is founded; as it would be a useless intrusion of facts and observations, most of which have been frequently the subject of public discussion, and none of which can have escaped the penetration of those to whom they would in this instance be addressed. They are, however, of a nature so serious, as, in the view of your Commissioners, to render the situation of the United States delicate and critical, calling for an exertion of the untied virtue and wisdom of all the members of the Confederacy.

Under this impression, Your Commissioners, with the most respectful deference, beg leave to suggest their unanimous conviction that it may essentially tend to advance the interests of the union if the States, by whom they have been respectively delegated, would themselves concur, and use their endeavors to procure the concurrence of the other States, in the appointment of Commissioners, to meet at Philadelphia on the second Monday in May next, to take into consideration the situation of the United States, to devise such further provisions as shall appear to them necessary to render the constitution of the Federal Government adequate to the exigencies of the Union; and to report such an Act for that purpose to the United States in Congress assembled, as when agreed to, by them, and afterwards confirmed by the Legislatures of every State, will effectually provide for the same.

Though your Commissioners could not with propriety address these observations and sentiments to any but the States they have the honor to represent, they have nevertheless concluded from motives of respect, to transmit copies of the Report to the United States in Congress assembled, and to the executives of the other States.
===========

So, although the Annapolis Convention did not have a quorum of States to directly address "the bottom line" of trade and commerce, it did precipitate the movement which resulted in "Congress assembled" later to establish what we now call the Constitutional Convention in May 1787.
scrutney

federalist # 8:


The Consequences of Hostilities Between the States
From the New York Packet. Tuesday, November 20, 1787.
HAMILTON  


To the People of the State of New York:

ASSUMING it therefore as an established truth that the several States, in case of disunion, or such combinations of them as might happen to be formed out of the wreck of the general Confederacy, would be subject to those vicissitudes of peace and war, of friendship and enmity, with each other, which have fallen to the lot of all neighboring nations not united under one government, let us enter into a concise detail of some of the consequences that would attend such a situation.

War between the States, in the first period of their separate existence, would be accompanied with much greater distresses than it commonly is in those countries where regular military establishments have long obtained. The disciplined armies always kept on foot on the continent of Europe, though they bear a malignant aspect to liberty and economy, have, notwithstanding, been productive of the signal advantage of rendering sudden conquests impracticable, and of preventing that rapid desolation which used to mark the progress of war prior to their introduction. The art of fortification has contributed to the same ends. The nations of Europe are encircled with chains of fortified places, which mutually obstruct invasion. Campaigns are wasted in reducing two or three frontier garrisons, to gain admittance into an enemy's country. Similar impediments occur at every step, to exhaust the strength and delay the progress of an invader. Formerly, an invading army would penetrate into the heart of a neighboring country almost as soon as intelligence of its approach could be received; but now a comparatively small force of disciplined troops, acting on the defensive, with the aid of posts, is able to impede, and finally to frustrate, the enterprises of one much more considerable. The history of war, in that quarter of the globe, is no longer a history of nations subdued and empires overturned, but of towns taken and retaken; of battles that decide nothing; of retreats more beneficial than victories; of much effort and little acquisition.

In this country the scene would be altogether reversed. The jealousy of military establishments would postpone them as long as possible. The want of fortifications, leaving the frontiers of one state open to another, would facilitate inroads. The populous States would, with little difficulty, overrun their less populous neighbors. Conquests would be as easy to be made as difficult to be retained. War, therefore, would be desultory and predatory. PLUNDER and devastation ever march in the train of irregulars. The calamities of individuals would make the principal figure in the events which would characterize our military exploits.

This picture is not too highly wrought; though, I confess, it would not long remain a just one. Safety from external danger is the most powerful director of national conduct. Even the ardent love of liberty will, after a time, give way to its dictates. The violent destruction of life and property incident to war, the continual effort and alarm attendant on a state of continual danger, will compel nations the most attached to liberty to resort for repose and security to institutions which have a tendency to destroy their civil and political rights. To be more safe, they at length become willing to run the risk of being less free.

The institutions chiefly alluded to are STANDING ARMIES and the correspondent appendages of military establishments. Standing armies, it is said, are not provided against in the new Constitution; and it is therefore inferred that they may exist under it.1 Their existence, however, from the very terms of the proposition, is, at most, problematical and uncertain. But standing armies, it may be replied, must inevitably result from a dissolution of the Confederacy. Frequent war and constant apprehension, which require a state of as constant preparation, will infallibly produce them. The weaker States or confederacies would first have recourse to them, to put themselves upon an equality with their more potent neighbors. They would endeavor to supply the inferiority of population and resources by a more regular and effective system of defense, by disciplined troops, and by fortifications. They would, at the same time, be necessitated to strengthen the executive arm of government, in doing which their constitutions would acquire a progressive direction toward monarchy. It is of the nature of war to increase the executive at the expense of the legislative authority.

The expedients which have been mentioned would soon give the States or confederacies that made use of them a superiority over their neighbors. Small states, or states of less natural strength, under vigorous governments, and with the assistance of disciplined armies, have often triumphed over large states, or states of greater natural strength, which have been destitute of these advantages. Neither the pride nor the safety of the more important States or confederacies would permit them long to submit to this mortifying and adventitious superiority. They would quickly resort to means similar to those by which it had been effected, to reinstate themselves in their lost pre-eminence. Thus, we should, in a little time, see established in every part of this country the same engines of despotism which have been the scourge of the Old World. This, at least, would be the natural course of things; and our reasonings will be the more likely to be just, in proportion as they are accommodated to this standard.

These are not vague inferences drawn from supposed or speculative defects in a Constitution, the whole power of which is lodged in the hands of a people, or their representatives and delegates, but they are solid conclusions, drawn from the natural and necessary progress of human affairs.

It may, perhaps, be asked, by way of objection to this, why did not standing armies spring up out of the contentions which so often distracted the ancient republics of Greece? Different answers, equally satisfactory, may be given to this question. The industrious habits of the people of the present day, absorbed in the pursuits of gain, and devoted to the improvements of agriculture and commerce, are incompatible with the condition of a nation of soldiers, which was the true condition of the people of those republics. The means of revenue, which have been so greatly multiplied by the increase of gold and silver and of the arts of industry, and the science of finance, which is the offspring of modern times, concurring with the habits of nations, have produced an entire revolution in the system of war, and have rendered disciplined armies, distinct from the body of the citizens, the inseparable companions of frequent hostility.

There is a wide difference, also, between military establishments in a country seldom exposed by its situation to internal invasions, and in one which is often subject to them, and always apprehensive of them. The rulers of the former can have a good pretext, if they are even so inclined, to keep on foot armies so numerous as must of necessity be maintained in the latter. These armies being, in the first case, rarely, if at all, called into activity for interior defense, the people are in no danger of being broken to military subordination. The laws are not accustomed to relaxations, in favor of military exigencies; the civil state remains in full vigor, neither corrupted, nor confounded with the principles or propensities of the other state. The smallness of the army renders the natural strength of the community an over-match for it; and the citizens, not habituated to look up to the military power for protection, or to submit to its oppressions, neither love nor fear the soldiery; they view them with a spirit of jealous acquiescence in a necessary evil, and stand ready to resist a power which they suppose may be exerted to the prejudice of their rights. The army under such circumstances may usefully aid the magistrate to suppress a small faction, or an occasional mob, or insurrection; but it will be unable to enforce encroachments against the united efforts of the great body of the people.

In a country in the predicament last described, the contrary of all this happens. The perpetual menacings of danger oblige the government to be always prepared to repel it; its armies must be numerous enough for instant defense. The continual necessity for their services enhances the importance of the soldier, and proportionably degrades the condition of the citizen. The military state becomes elevated above the civil. The inhabitants of territories, often the theatre of war, are unavoidably subjected to frequent infringements on their rights, which serve to weaken their sense of those rights; and by degrees the people are brought to consider the soldiery not only as their protectors, but as their superiors. The transition from this disposition to that of considering them masters, is neither remote nor difficult; but it is very difficult to prevail upon a people under such impressions, to make a bold or effectual resistance to usurpations supported by the military power.

The kingdom of Great Britain falls within the first description. An insular situation, and a powerful marine, guarding it in a great measure against the possibility of foreign invasion, supersede the necessity of a numerous army within the kingdom. A sufficient force to make head against a sudden descent, till the militia could have time to rally and embody, is all that has been deemed requisite. No motive of national policy has demanded, nor would public opinion have tolerated, a larger number of troops upon its domestic establishment. There has been, for a long time past, little room for the operation of the other causes, which have been enumerated as the consequences of internal war. This peculiar felicity of situation has, in a great degree, contributed to preserve the liberty which that country to this day enjoys, in spite of the prevalent venality and corruption. If, on the contrary, Britain had been situated on the continent, and had been compelled, as she would have been, by that situation, to make her military establishments at home coextensive with those of the other great powers of Europe, she, like them, would in all probability be, at this day, a victim to the absolute power of a single man. 'T is possible, though not easy, that the people of that island may be enslaved from other causes; but it cannot be by the prowess of an army so inconsiderable as that which has been usually kept up within the kingdom.

If we are wise enough to preserve the Union we may for ages enjoy an advantage similar to that of an insulated situation. Europe is at a great distance from us. Her colonies in our vicinity will be likely to continue too much disproportioned in strength to be able to give us any dangerous annoyance. Extensive military establishments cannot, in this position, be necessary to our security. But if we should be disunited, and the integral parts should either remain separated, or, which is most probable, should be thrown together into two or three confederacies, we should be, in a short course of time, in the predicament of the continental powers of Europe --our liberties would be a prey to the means of defending ourselves against the ambition and jealousy of each other.

This is an idea not superficial or futile, but solid and weighty. It deserves the most serious and mature consideration of every prudent and honest man of whatever party. If such men will make a firm and solemn pause, and meditate dispassionately on the importance of this interesting idea; if they will contemplate it in all its attitudes, and trace it to all its consequences, they will not hesitate to part with trivial objections to a Constitution, the rejection of which would in all probability put a final period to the Union. The airy phantoms that flit before the distempered imaginations of some of its adversaries would quickly give place to the more substantial forms of dangers, real, certain, and formidable.

PUBLIUS.

1 This objection will be fully examined in its proper place, and it will be shown that the only natural precaution which could have been taken on this subject has been taken; and a much better one than is to be found in any constitution that has been heretofore framed in America, most of which contain no guard at all on this subject.

a quick commentary on federalist # 8 from the perennial publius.
bieramar

Meanwhile.......

January 1788.  So far its been a slam dunk for the Madisonians (Federalists) with either unanimous or overwhelming majorities of the delegates to the States' Ratifying Conventions voting for the ratification of the Constitution (see the Ratifying thread).

By the end of December 1787 Publius had published 36 op-eds in New York newspapers promoting ratification. Initially the plan had been to write about 20, in which the arguments from the secret proceedings in the Constitutional Convention would be publicized - in retrospect a somewhat naive belief that once the people read Madison's, Jay's and Hamilton's brilliance they'd all vote to ratify the Constitution.

The "Old Patriots" - whom we now call Anti Federalists - who really encompassed several separate philosophies and "wants" (individual freedoms of speech, religion, commerce; strong local government, local tax v federal tax, etc.), did share the one great concern about too much power in a central federal government, although still differing among themselves on the specifics of what they wanted instead of the Constitution.  

(Consider Libertarians, Tea Partiers, and Occupiers today - each has separate "wants" but all share opposition to the melded wealthy/corporate/federal gov't power structure).

Since October the so-called Anti-Federalists had also been publishing;
Agrippa - 11 Letters, 5 Essays,
Brutus - 11 Essays,
Cato - 7 Essays,
Centinel - 14 Letters, and  
Federal Farmer - 18 Letters.

Agrippa's, AND links to ALL the Anti Federalist and Federalist extant writings here: http://teachingamericanhistory.org/ratification/timeline-agrippa.html

The media battle was joined throughout the remaining States which hadn't yet ratified, as the first 36 Publius pieces were bound into the book "The Federalist" and distributed to counter the newspaper articles and pamphlets.

This was when - early 1788 - the impact of Madison's, Jay's and Hamilton's opinions and rationales were first felt outside of New York, as "The Federalist" was distributed throughout the States.

Argument and counter-argument; and Madison's acceptance that his early optimism was premature is indicated when in Federalist 37 he writes; "We really need to have a more copious investigation of all of this."
scrutney

sorry...i've been pretty slack about posting here lately.
i've been on a history binge of late, and the one thing you can say about history books is that there certainly are a lot of words in them.

and of course there isn't a lot of dialogue to break up the pages (and damn few pictures, either) so when you say you read 500 pages, you really read 500 pages.

considering the fact that when i post one of the federalist papers, i feel that it's a pretty good idea to actually read it first...well...i've been busy reading other stuff.

here's federalist #9...the next one up is my favorite, federalist # 10, so i may feel compelled to jump in and comment.


The Union as a Safeguard Against Domestic Faction and Insurrection
For the Independent Journal.
HAMILTON


To the People of the State of New York:

A FIRM Union will be of the utmost moment to the peace and liberty of the States, as a barrier against domestic faction and insurrection. It is impossible to read the history of the petty republics of Greece and Italy without feeling sensations of horror and disgust at the distractions with which they were continually agitated, and at the rapid succession of revolutions by which they were kept in a state of perpetual vibration between the extremes of tyranny and anarchy. If they exhibit occasional calms, these only serve as short-lived contrast to the furious storms that are to succeed. If now and then intervals of felicity open to view, we behold them with a mixture of regret, arising from the reflection that the pleasing scenes before us are soon to be overwhelmed by the tempestuous waves of sedition and party rage. If momentary rays of glory break forth from the gloom, while they dazzle us with a transient and fleeting brilliancy, they at the same time admonish us to lament that the vices of government should pervert the direction and tarnish the lustre of those bright talents and exalted endowments for which the favored soils that produced them have been so justly celebrated.

From the disorders that disfigure the annals of those republics the advocates of despotism have drawn arguments, not only against the forms of republican government, but against the very principles of civil liberty. They have decried all free government as inconsistent with the order of society, and have indulged themselves in malicious exultation over its friends and partisans. Happily for mankind, stupendous fabrics reared on the basis of liberty, which have flourished for ages, have, in a few glorious instances, refuted their gloomy sophisms. And, I trust, America will be the broad and solid foundation of other edifices, not less magnificent, which will be equally permanent monuments of their errors.

But it is not to be denied that the portraits they have sketched of republican government were too just copies of the originals from which they were taken. If it had been found impracticable to have devised models of a more perfect structure, the enlightened friends to liberty would have been obliged to abandon the cause of that species of government as indefensible. The science of politics, however, like most other sciences, has received great improvement. The efficacy of various principles is now well understood, which were either not known at all, or imperfectly known to the ancients. The regular distribution of power into distinct departments; the introduction of legislative balances and checks; the institution of courts composed of judges holding their offices during good behavior; the representation of the people in the legislature by deputies of their own election: these are wholly new discoveries, or have made their principal progress towards perfection in modern times. They are means, and powerful means, by which the excellences of republican government may be retained and its imperfections lessened or avoided. To this catalogue of circumstances that tend to the amelioration of popular systems of civil government, I shall venture, however novel it may appear to some, to add one more, on a principle which has been made the foundation of an objection to the new Constitution; I mean the ENLARGEMENT of the ORBIT within which such systems are to revolve, either in respect to the dimensions of a single State or to the consolidation of several smaller States into one great Confederacy. The latter is that which immediately concerns the object under consideration. It will, however, be of use to examine the principle in its application to a single State, which shall be attended to in another place.

The utility of a Confederacy, as well to suppress faction and to guard the internal tranquillity of States, as to increase their external force and security, is in reality not a new idea. It has been practiced upon in different countries and ages, and has received the sanction of the most approved writers on the subject of politics. The opponents of the plan proposed have, with great assiduity, cited and circulated the observations of Montesquieu on the necessity of a contracted territory for a republican government. But they seem not to have been apprised of the sentiments of that great man expressed in another part of his work, nor to have adverted to the consequences of the principle to which they subscribe with such ready acquiescence.

When Montesquieu recommends a small extent for republics, the standards he had in view were of dimensions far short of the limits of almost every one of these States. Neither Virginia, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New York, North Carolina, nor Georgia can by any means be compared with the models from which he reasoned and to which the terms of his description apply. If we therefore take his ideas on this point as the criterion of truth, we shall be driven to the alternative either of taking refuge at once in the arms of monarchy, or of splitting ourselves into an infinity of little, jealous, clashing, tumultuous commonwealths, the wretched nurseries of unceasing discord, and the miserable objects of universal pity or contempt. Some of the writers who have come forward on the other side of the question seem to have been aware of the dilemma; and have even been bold enough to hint at the division of the larger States as a desirable thing. Such an infatuated policy, such a desperate expedient, might, by the multiplication of petty offices, answer the views of men who possess not qualifications to extend their influence beyond the narrow circles of personal intrigue, but it could never promote the greatness or happiness of the people of America.

Referring the examination of the principle itself to another place, as has been already mentioned, it will be sufficient to remark here that, in the sense of the author who has been most emphatically quoted upon the occasion, it would only dictate a reduction of the SIZE of the more considerable MEMBERS of the Union, but would not militate against their being all comprehended in one confederate government. And this is the true question, in the discussion of which we are at present interested.

So far are the suggestions of Montesquieu from standing in opposition to a general Union of the States, that he explicitly treats of a CONFEDERATE REPUBLIC as the expedient for extending the sphere of popular government, and reconciling the advantages of monarchy with those of republicanism.

"It is very probable,'' (says he1) "that mankind would have been obliged at length to live constantly under the government of a single person, had they not contrived a kind of constitution that has all the internal advantages of a republican, together with the external force of a monarchical government. I mean a CONFEDERATE REPUBLIC.

"This form of government is a convention by which several smaller STATES agree to become members of a larger ONE, which they intend to form. It is a kind of assemblage of societies that constitute a new one, capable of increasing, by means of new associations, till they arrive to such a degree of power as to be able to provide for the security of the united body.

"A republic of this kind, able to withstand an external force, may support itself without any internal corruptions. The form of this society prevents all manner of inconveniences.

"If a single member should attempt to usurp the supreme authority, he could not be supposed to have an equal authority and credit in all the confederate states. Were he to have too great influence over one, this would alarm the rest. Were he to subdue a part, that which would still remain free might oppose him with forces independent of those which he had usurped and overpower him before he could be settled in his usurpation.

"Should a popular insurrection happen in one of the confederate states the others are able to quell it. Should abuses creep into one part, they are reformed by those that remain sound. The state may be destroyed on one side, and not on the other; the confederacy may be dissolved, and the confederates preserve their sovereignty.

"As this government is composed of small republics, it enjoys the internal happiness of each; and with respect to its external situation, it is possessed, by means of the association, of all the advantages of large monarchies.''

I have thought it proper to quote at length these interesting passages, because they contain a luminous abridgment of the principal arguments in favor of the Union, and must effectually remove the false impressions which a misapplication of other parts of the work was calculated to make. They have, at the same time, an intimate connection with the more immediate design of this paper; which is, to illustrate the tendency of the Union to repress domestic faction and insurrection.

A distinction, more subtle than accurate, has been raised between a CONFEDERACY and a CONSOLIDATION of the States. The essential characteristic of the first is said to be, the restriction of its authority to the members in their collective capacities, without reaching to the individuals of whom they are composed. It is contended that the national council ought to have no concern with any object of internal administration. An exact equality of suffrage between the members has also been insisted upon as a leading feature of a confederate government. These positions are, in the main, arbitrary; they are supported neither by principle nor precedent. It has indeed happened, that governments of this kind have generally operated in the manner which the distinction taken notice of, supposes to be inherent in their nature; but there have been in most of them extensive exceptions to the practice, which serve to prove, as far as example will go, that there is no absolute rule on the subject. And it will be clearly shown in the course of this investigation that as far as the principle contended for has prevailed, it has been the cause of incurable disorder and imbecility in the government.

The definition of a CONFEDERATE REPUBLIC seems simply to be "an assemblage of societies,'' or an association of two or more states into one state. The extent, modifications, and objects of the federal authority are mere matters of discretion. So long as the separate organization of the members be not abolished; so long as it exists, by a constitutional necessity, for local purposes; though it should be in perfect subordination to the general authority of the union, it would still be, in fact and in theory, an association of states, or a confederacy. The proposed Constitution, so far from implying an abolition of the State governments, makes them constituent parts of the national sovereignty, by allowing them a direct representation in the Senate, and leaves in their possession certain exclusive and very important portions of sovereign power. This fully corresponds, in every rational import of the terms, with the idea of a federal government.

In the Lycian confederacy, which consisted of twenty-three CITIES or republics, the largest were entitled to THREE votes in the COMMON COUNCIL, those of the middle class to TWO, and the smallest to ONE. The COMMON COUNCIL had the appointment of all the judges and magistrates of the respective CITIES. This was certainly the most, delicate species of interference in their internal administration; for if there be any thing that seems exclusively appropriated to the local jurisdictions, it is the appointment of their own officers. Yet Montesquieu, speaking of this association, says: "Were I to give a model of an excellent Confederate Republic, it would be that of Lycia.'' Thus we perceive that the distinctions insisted upon were not within the contemplation of this enlightened civilian; and we shall be led to conclude, that they are the novel refinements of an erroneous theory.

PUBLIUS.

a quick commentary from the perennial publius.
bieramar

"The science of politics, however, like most other sciences, has received great improvement [since the Roman/Greece Republic days, as known by the Founders from their reading of the then known writings from those eras].

"The efficacy of various principles is now well understood, which were either not known at all, or imperfectly known to the ancients.

"The regular distribution of power into distinct departments;
the introduction of legislative balances and checks;

the institution of courts composed of judges holding their offices during good behavior;

the representation of the people in the legislature by deputies of their own election:


these are wholly new discoveries, or have made their principal progress towards perfection in modern times.

"They are means, and powerful means, by which the excellences of republican government may be retained and its imperfections lessened or avoided....

"...I shall venture, however novel it may appear to some, to add one more, on a principle which has been made the foundation of an objection to the new Constitution;

"I mean the ENLARGEMENT of the ORBIT within which such systems are to revolve, either in respect to the dimensions of a single State or to the consolidation of several smaller States into one great Confederacy." ~ Alexander Hamilton, Publius 9, November 1787.

For context, this November publication in New York - and republished in other States - was during the efforts to convince the delegates to the States' Ratifying Conventions to approve of the Constitution - see the 'Ratifying' thread.

As one in a series, it sums up the essential proper elements of the democratic republican Legislative and Judicial Branches as outlined in the Constitution, and doesn't address either individuals' unalienable and civil rights or the Executive Branch.

Approximately 3 or 4 times a year on blogs and forums - or in offline discussions - I express in my own words Hamilton's idea of "ENLARGEMENT of the ORBIT within which such systems are to revolve... to the consolidation of several smaller States into one great Confederacy", usually in reference to the consolidation of the smaller states (countries) in the Americas into on great United States of the Americas - and on occasion the consolidation of all nations into a great United Nations of the World.

Rarely do I find assent of one of the fundamental principles on which the United States of America is anchored!
bieramar

Federalist 10

The Same Subject Continued
(The Union as a Safeguard Against Domestic Faction and Insurrection) for the Independent Journal.

To the People of the State of New York:

AMONG the numerous advantages promised by a wellconstructed Union, none deserves to be more accurately developed than its tendency to break and control the violence of faction. The friend of popular governments never finds himself so much alarmed for their character and fate, as when he contemplates their propensity to this dangerous vice. He will not fail, therefore, to set a due value on any plan which, without violating the principles to which he is attached, provides a proper cure for it.

The instability, injustice, and confusion introduced into the public councils, have, in truth, been the mortal diseases under which popular governments have everywhere perished; as they continue to be the favorite and fruitful topics from which the adversaries to liberty derive their most specious declamations.

The valuable improvements made by the American constitutions on the popular models, both ancient and modern, cannot certainly be too much admired; but it would be an unwarrantable partiality, to contend that they have as effectually obviated the danger on this side, as was wished and expected.

Complaints are everywhere heard from our most considerate and virtuous citizens, equally the friends of public and private faith, and of public and personal liberty, that our governments are too unstable, that the public good is disregarded in the conflicts of rival parties, and that measures are too often decided, not according to the rules of justice and the rights of the minor party, but by the superior force of an interested and overbearing majority. However anxiously we may wish that these complaints had no foundation, the evidence, of known facts will not permit us to deny that they are in some degree true.

It will be found, indeed, on a candid review of our situation, that some of the distresses under which we labor have been erroneously charged on the operation of our governments; but it will be found, at the same time, that other causes will not alone account for many of our heaviest misfortunes; and, particularly, for that prevailing and increasing distrust of public engagements, and alarm for private rights, which are echoed from one end of the continent to the other. These must be chiefly, if not wholly, effects of the unsteadiness and injustice with which a factious spirit has tainted our public administrations.

By a faction, I understand a number of citizens, whether amounting to a majority or a minority of the whole, who are united and actuated by some common impulse of passion, or of interest, adversed to the rights of other citizens, or to the permanent and aggregate interests of the community.

There are two methods of curing the mischiefs of faction: the one, by removing its causes; the other, by controlling its effects.

There are again two methods of removing the causes of faction: the one, by destroying the liberty which is essential to its existence; the other, by giving to every citizen the same opinions, the same passions, and the same interests.

It could never be more truly said than of the first remedy, that it was worse than the disease.

Liberty is to faction what air is to fire, an aliment without which it instantly expires.

But it could not be less folly to abolish liberty, which is essential to political life, because it nourishes faction, than it would be to wish the annihilation of air, which is essential to animal life, because it imparts to fire its destructive agency.

The second expedient is as impracticable as the first would be unwise.

As long as the reason of man continues fallible, and he is at liberty to exercise it, different opinions will be formed.

As long as the connection subsists between his reason and his self-love, his opinions and his passions will have a reciprocal influence on each other; and the former will be objects to which the latter will attach themselves.

The diversity in the faculties of men, from which the rights of property originate, is not less an insuperable obstacle to a uniformity of interests.

The protection of these faculties is the first object of government.

From the protection of different and unequal faculties of acquiring property, the possession of different degrees and kinds of property immediately results; and from the influence of these on the sentiments and views of the respective proprietors, ensues a division of the society into different interests and parties.
The latent causes of faction are thus sown in the nature of man; and we see them everywhere brought into different degrees of activity, according to the different circumstances of civil society.

A zeal for different opinions concerning religion, concerning government, and many other points, as well of speculation as of practice; an attachment to different leaders ambitiously contending for pre-eminence and power; or to persons of other descriptions whose fortunes have been interesting to the human passions, have, in turn, divided mankind into parties, inflamed them with mutual animosity, and rendered them much more disposed to vex and oppress each other than to co-operate for their common good.

So strong is this propensity of mankind to fall into mutual animosities, that where no substantial occasion presents itself, the most frivolous and fanciful distinctions have been sufficient to kindle their unfriendly passions and excite their most violent conflicts.

But the most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property.

Those who hold and those who are without property have ever formed distinct interests in society.

Those who are creditors, and those who are debtors, fall under a like discrimination.

A landed interest, a manufacturing interest, a mercantile interest, a moneyed interest, with many lesser interests, grow up of necessity in civilized nations, and divide them into different classes, actuated by different sentiments and views.

The regulation of these various and interfering interests forms the principal task of modern legislation, and involves the spirit of party and faction in the necessary and ordinary operations of the government.

No man is allowed to be a judge in his own cause, because his interest would certainly bias his judgment, and, not improbably, corrupt his integrity.

With equal, nay with greater reason, a body of men are unfit to be both judges and parties at the same time; yet what are many of the most important acts of legislation, but so many judicial determinations, not indeed concerning the rights of single persons, but concerning the rights of large bodies of citizens?

And what are the different classes of legislators but advocates and parties to the causes which they determine?

Is a law proposed concerning private debts?

It is a question to which the creditors are parties on one side and the debtors on the other. Justice ought to hold the balance between them. Yet the parties are, and must be, themselves the judges; and the most numerous party, or, in other words, the most powerful faction must be expected to prevail.

Shall domestic manufactures be encouraged, and in what degree, by restrictions on foreign manufactures? are questions which would be differently decided by the landed and the manufacturing classes, and probably by neither with a sole regard to justice and the public good.

The apportionment of taxes on the various descriptions of property is an act which seems to require the most exact impartiality; yet there is, perhaps, no legislative act in which greater opportunity and temptation are given to a predominant party to trample on the rules of justice. Every shilling with which they overburden the inferior number, is a shilling saved to their own pockets.

It is in vain to say that enlightened statesmen will be able to adjust these clashing interests, and render them all subservient to the public good.

Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm.

Nor, in many cases, can such an adjustment be made at all without taking into view indirect and remote considerations, which will rarely prevail over the immediate interest which one party may find in disregarding the rights of another or the good of the whole.

The inference to which we are brought is, that the causes of faction cannot be removed, and that relief is only to be sought in the means of controlling its effects.

If a faction consists of less than a majority, relief is supplied by the republican principle, which enables the majority to defeat its sinister views by regular vote. It may clog the administration, it may convulse the society; but it will be unable to execute and mask its violence under the forms of the Constitution.

When a majority is included in a faction, the form of popular government, on the other hand, enables it to sacrifice to its ruling passion or interest both the public good and the rights of other citizens.

To secure the public good and private rights against the danger of such a faction, and at the same time to preserve the spirit and the form of popular government, is then the great object to which our inquiries are directed.

Let me add that it is the great desideratum by which this form of government can be rescued from the opprobrium under which it has so long labored, and be recommended to the esteem and adoption of mankind.

By what means is this object attainable?

Evidently by one of two only.

Either the existence of the same passion or interest in a majority at the same time must be prevented, or the majority, having such coexistent passion or interest, must be rendered, by their number and local situation, unable to concert and carry into effect schemes of oppression.

If the impulse and the opportunity be suffered to coincide, we well know that neither moral nor religious motives can be relied on as an adequate control. They are not found to be such on the injustice and violence of individuals, and lose their efficacy in proportion to the number combined together, that is, in proportion as their efficacy becomes needful.

From this view of the subject it may be concluded that a pure democracy, by which I mean a society consisting of a small number of citizens, who assemble and administer the government in person, can admit of no cure for the mischiefs of faction.

A common passion or interest will, in almost every case, be felt by a majority of the whole; a communication and concert result from the form of government itself; and there is nothing to check the inducements to sacrifice the weaker party or an obnoxious individual. Hence it is that such democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths.

Theoretic politicians, who have patronized this species of government, have erroneously supposed that by reducing mankind to a perfect equality in their political rights, they would, at the same time, be perfectly equalized and assimilated in their possessions, their opinions, and their passions.

A republic, by which I mean a government in which the scheme of representation takes place, opens a different prospect, and promises the cure for which we are seeking. Let us examine the points in which it varies from pure democracy, and we shall comprehend both the nature of the cure and the efficacy which it must derive from the Union.

The two great points of difference between a democracy and a republic are: first, the delegation of the government, in the latter, to a small number of citizens elected by the rest; secondly, the greater number of citizens, and greater sphere of country, over which the latter may be extended.

The effect of the first difference is, on the one hand, to refine and enlarge the public views, by passing them through the medium of a chosen body of citizens, whose wisdom may best discern the true interest of their country, and whose patriotism and love of justice will be least likely to sacrifice it to temporary or partial considerations. Under such a regulation, it may well happen that the public voice, pronounced by the representatives of the people, will be more consonant to the public good than if pronounced by the people themselves, convened for the purpose.

On the other hand, the effect may be inverted. Men of factious tempers, of local prejudices, or of sinister designs, may, by intrigue, by corruption, or by other means, first obtain the suffrages, and then betray the interests, of the people. The question resulting is, whether small or extensive republics are more favorable to the election of proper guardians of the public weal; and it is clearly decided in favor of the latter by two obvious considerations:

In the first place, it is to be remarked that, however small the republic may be, the representatives must be raised to a certain number, in order to guard against the cabals of a few; and that, however large it may be, they must be limited to a certain number, in order to guard against the confusion of a multitude.

Hence, the number of representatives in the two cases not being in proportion to that of the two constituents, and being proportionally greater in the small republic, it follows that, if the proportion of fit characters be not less in the large than in the small republic, the former will present a greater option, and consequently a greater probability of a fit choice.

In the next place, as each representative will be chosen by a greater number of citizens in the large than in the small republic, it will be more difficult for unworthy candidates to practice with success the vicious arts by which elections are too often carried; and the suffrages of the people being more free, will be more likely to centre in men who possess the most attractive merit and the most diffusive and established characters.

It must be confessed that in this, as in most other cases, there is a mean, on both sides of which inconveniences will be found to lie. By enlarging too much the number of electors, you render the representatives too little acquainted with all their local circumstances and lesser interests; as by reducing it too much, you render him unduly attached to these, and too little fit to comprehend and pursue great and national objects.

The federal Constitution forms a happy combination in this respect; the great and aggregate interests being referred to the national, the local and particular to the State legislatures.

The other point of difference is, the greater number of citizens and extent of territory which may be brought within the compass of republican than of democratic government; and it is this circumstance principally which renders factious combinations less to be dreaded in the former than in the latter.

The smaller the society, the fewer probably will be the distinct parties and interests composing it; the fewer the distinct parties and interests, the more frequently will a majority be found of the same party; and the smaller the number of individuals composing a majority, and the smaller the compass within which they are placed, the more easily will they concert and execute their plans of oppression.

Extend the sphere, and you take in a greater variety of parties and interests; you make it less probable that a majority of the whole will have a common motive to invade the rights of other citizens; or if such a common motive exists, it will be more difficult for all who feel it to discover their own strength, and to act in unison with each other. Besides other impediments, it may be remarked that, where there is a consciousness of unjust or dishonorable purposes, communication is always checked by distrust in proportion to the number whose concurrence is necessary.

Hence, it clearly appears, that the same advantage which a republic has over a democracy, in controlling the effects of faction, is enjoyed by a large over a small republic, - is enjoyed by the Union over the States composing it.

Does the advantage consist in the substitution of representatives whose enlightened views and virtuous sentiments render them superior to local prejudices and schemes of injustice?

It will not be denied that the representation of the Union will be most likely to possess these requisite endowments.

Does it consist in the greater security afforded by a greater variety of parties, against the event of any one party being able to outnumber and oppress the rest?

In an equal degree does the increased variety of parties comprised within the Union, increase this security.

Does it, in fine, consist in the greater obstacles opposed to the concert and accomplishment of the secret wishes of an unjust and interested majority?

Here, again, the extent of the Union gives it the most palpable advantage.

The influence of factious leaders may kindle a flame within their particular States, but will be unable to spread a general conflagration through the other States. A religious sect may degenerate into a political faction in a part of the Confederacy; but the variety of sects dispersed over the entire face of it must secure the national councils against any danger from that source. A rage for paper money, for an abolition of debts, for an equal division of property, or for any other improper or wicked project, will be less apt to pervade the whole body of the Union than a particular member of it; in the same proportion as such a malady is more likely to taint a particular county or district, than an entire State.

In the extent and proper structure of the Union, therefore, we behold a republican remedy for the diseases most incident to republican government. And according to the degree of pleasure and pride we feel in being republicans, ought to be our zeal in cherishing the spirit and supporting the character of Federalists. ~ James Madison, writing as Publius.
bieramar

My comments on Federalist #10

The tag team approach of Hamilton, Jay and Madison to convince their political peers in the States' Assemblies and Ratifying Conventions to ratify the newly written Constitution becomes apparent with Federalist #10 - logically following Jay's arguments about "strength in numbers" and "common defense" in the earlier Federalist Papers, and Hamilton's expressions of democratic representative republicanism in Federalist #9 (reminding ourselves again that in 1787/1788 the Essays were published under the one name "Publius" and not accredited to the three by their names).  Madison's argument about factions and how the checks and balances are effective in the Constitutional Republic aren't concluded until Federalist #51.

Madison concludes the first major premise - the primary need of a confederation of States, a Union of States with the federal governing body distinct from each of the States - by addressing the dangers of factions. Specifically how to prevent one group sharing a particular economic, social, religious or politcal philosophy from usurping the rights of those minority groups who disagree with them¹.  

The two writers Brutus and Centennial also had addressed the dangers of factions, and their conclusions were that it would be necessary for the Union to have a strong central Executive Branch to control the diverse factions throughout the States - and they opposed concentrating such power, which would inevitably in their minds lead to tyranny.  

There is much mythology, and much more bad scholarship, in modern day discussions of the Founders and their beliefs. One of the least understood, based upon reading op-ed, blog and forum comments, are the Founders' references to and understandings of 'democracy' and
'republic' - as possible forms of governments.

As anyone who has read the first nine Federalist Papers on this thread knows - and as anyone who has read the other threads about the debating, writing, and ratification of the Constitution knows - the Founders all recognized the difference between big "D" Democratic government (mobocracy as they imagined it) and small "d" democratic decision-making; and likewise the difference between big "R" Republican government and small "r" republican decision-making.

The Constitution as sent to the States for ratification was a document of compromises which blended the small "r" and small "d" decision-making processes - with checks and balances - into a Federal Republic.

The arguments in the States - and the arguments between Federalist and Anti-Federalist writers, speech-makers, and debaters were NOT about whether the United States, or any individual State, would be either a Republic or a Democracy.

The arguments (1) were about the respective powers and rights of the Republican States and the Republican United States, and (2) about which issues and would be determined and which officials elected by the majority democratic votes of the electorate (white adult males with a minimal designated amount of wealth in all the States, with a few States having expanded suffrage for non-propertied taxpayers, and some with more limited suffrage of a religious test).

NO ONE was advocating making the Confederation/Union a Democracy, as the big "D" was then understood by the Founders - only the extent of a democratic majority in the electoral process of the elements of the Republic was being argued.

So why did so many of the Founders rail against Democracy; but not against democratic elections of representatives, and referendums on other governing issues?

Example from Madison's Federalist 55: "In all very numerous assemblies, of whatever character composed, passion never fails to wrest the sceptre from reason. Had every Athenian citizen been a Socrates, every Athenian assembly would still have been a mob."

There are two main reasons for the railings.

First, the classical method of argument which the Founders were immersed in from their reading of the extant Classical Literature of the Roman and Greek thinkers² - read by most of the Founders in the original Latin and Greek languages.
This method of persuasive argument had been perfected by European and United Kingdom thinkers in the preceding centuries - with whose writings the Founders were also familiar.

The argument style is to begin with a Proposition, e.g. "Democracy is the most fair type of a government derived from free persons" - and then destroy the premise with logic and examples of a more fair alternate Proposition, e.g. "A Republic is...."

Hamilton, Jay and Madison did not address the Constitution one clause after another and argue the pros and cons. Rather they compared the whole body, with its democratic representation clauses, to an imagined Democracy, where all voters determined every piece of legislation and law by gathering together and voting - with the majority winning the day.

No such "direct Democracy" had ever existed in any governing body of diverse peoples in the history of the world³ - it was a classic example of a "strawman argument" - which is/was an excellent teaching and persuasive debating device. In exposing the dangers of a big "D" government, Madison et al were confirming the necessity of a small "d" process to prevent the tyranny of either the masses or of the rulers.  

The Founders were of course aware of the philosophical musings of thinkers since the Protestant Reformation about an ideal utopian world of "direct Democracy" (Madison's reference to "theoretic politicians"), and of the attempts to implement it within religious sects where all the "voters" believed the same things about everything.

They also were aware of the limited "direct Democracy" in the 17th century Puritan-settled Colonies of Massachusetts Bay, Plymouth Plantation, Connecticut and Rhode Island, where "town hall" meetings replaced the church congregations' meetings to make decisions by majority vote. However "direct Democracy" was never attempted to be extended in those Colonies into counties, boroughs or the Colonial governments.

¹Parenthetically, Madison's Federalist #10 is the basis of my 21st century argument for proportional representation in Congress as the only way to insure adequate representation "of the people" now that suffrage has been extended to all most all "of the people". The dangers of diverse factions forced into one or the other of 2 major Parties are proved by the tyranny of the 2-Party control of the nomination and election process of the Legislative Branch.

²Along the way to my mountain I did manage to earn a Bachelors of Arts in Classical Languages and Literature - my thesis: LORAS COLLEGE THESIS
http://community.webtv.net/HeavyAttackGuestBook/LorasCollegeThesis/


³The Founders' obviously could only read the Latin and Greek Classics which were available in the 18th century, and what many bloggers today don't realize is that many of the Classics we can read today were NOT available to the them.

Their understanding of the Athenian (Greek) Democratic Constitution, i.e. their incorrect understanding of "direct Democracy," came from tidbits in extant tomes they did have from ancient biased aristocratic writers' who rabidly opposed the Athens Republic, especially Socrates.

Aristotle's translation of the Athenian Constitution had been lost in the 7th century BCE and wasn't re-discovered until a copy was found in the Egyptian desert in 1890. In fact the Athens government was much like the democratically-elected representative Republic of the U.S. Constitution.
bieramar

Federalist #51, concluding #8,#9 and #10

Federalist No. 51

The Structure of the Government Must Furnish the Proper Checks and Balances Between the Different Departments

Independent Journal

Wednesday, February 6, 1788

To the People of the State of New York:

TO WHAT expedient, then, shall we finally resort, for maintaining in practice the necessary partition of power among the several departments, as laid down in the Constitution?

The only answer that can be given is, that as all these exterior provisions are found to be inadequate, the defect must be supplied, by so contriving the interior structure of the government as that its several constituent parts may, by their mutual relations, be the means of keeping each other in their proper places.

Without presuming to undertake a full development of this important idea, I will hazard a few general observations, which may perhaps place it in a clearer light, and enable us to form a more correct judgment of the principles and structure of the government planned by the convention.

In order to lay a due foundation for that separate and distinct exercise of the different powers of government, which to a certain extent is admitted on all hands to be essential to the preservation of liberty, it is evident that each department should have a will of its own; and consequently should be so constituted that the members of each should have as little agency as possible in the appointment of the members of the others.

Were this principle rigorously adhered to, it would require that all the appointments for the supreme executive, legislative, and judiciary magistracies should be drawn from the same fountain of authority, the people, through channels having no communication whatever with one another. Perhaps such a plan of constructing the several departments would be less difficult in practice than it may in contemplation appear. Some difficulties, however, and some additional expense would attend the execution of it. Some deviations, therefore, from the principle must be admitted.

In the constitution of the judiciary department in particular, it might be inexpedient to insist rigorously on the principle: first, because peculiar qualifications being essential in the members, the primary consideration ought to be to select that mode of choice which best secures these qualifications; secondly, because the permanent tenure by which the appointments are held in that department, must soon destroy all sense of dependence on the authority conferring them.

It is equally evident, that the members of each department should be as little dependent as possible on those of the others, for the emoluments annexed to their offices.

Were the executive magistrate, or the judges, not independent of the legislature in this particular, their independence in every other would be merely nominal.

But the great security against a gradual concentration of the several powers in the same department, consists in giving to those who administer each department the necessary constitutional means and personal motives to resist encroachments of the others.

The provision for defense must in this, as in all other cases, be made commensurate to the danger of attack. Ambition must be made to counteract ambition.

The interest of the man must be connected with the constitutional rights of the place. It may be a reflection on human nature, that such devices should be necessary to control the abuses of government.

But what is government itself, but the greatest of all reflections on human nature?

If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.

In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.

A dependence on the people is, no doubt, the primary control on the government; but experience has taught mankind the necessity of auxiliary precautions.

This policy of supplying, by opposite and rival interests, the defect of better motives, might be traced through the whole system of human affairs, private as well as public.

We see it particularly displayed in all the subordinate distributions of power, where the constant aim is to divide and arrange the several offices in such a manner as that each may be a check on the other -- that the private interest of every individual may be a sentinel over the public rights. These inventions of prudence cannot be less requisite in the distribution of the supreme powers of the State.

But it is not possible to give to each department an equal power of self-defense. In republican government, the legislative authority necessarily predominates.
The remedy for this inconveniency is to divide the legislature into different branches; and to render them, by different modes of election and different principles of action, as little connected with each other as the nature of their common functions and their common dependence on the society will admit.

It may even be necessary to guard against dangerous encroachments by still further precautions. As the weight of the legislative authority requires that it should be thus divided, the weakness of the executive may require, on the other hand, that it should be fortified.

An absolute negative on the legislature appears, at first view, to be the natural defense with which the executive magistrate should be armed.

But perhaps it would be neither altogether safe nor alone sufficient. On ordinary occasions it might not be exerted with the requisite firmness, and on extraordinary occasions it might be perfidiously abused.

May not this defect of an absolute negative be supplied by some qualified connection between this weaker department and the weaker branch of the stronger department, by which the latter may be led to support the constitutional rights of the former, without being too much detached from the rights of its own department?

If the principles on which these observations are founded be just, as I persuade myself they are, and they be applied as a criterion to the several State constitutions, and to the federal Constitution it will be found that if the latter does not perfectly correspond with them, the former are infinitely less able to bear such a test.

There are, moreover, two considerations particularly applicable to the federal system of America, which place that system in a very interesting point of view.

First.

In a single republic, all the power surrendered by the people is submitted to the administration of a single government; and the usurpations are guarded against by a division of the government into distinct and separate departments.

In the compound republic of America, the power surrendered by the people is first divided between two distinct governments, and then the portion allotted to each subdivided among distinct and separate departments. Hence a double security arises to the rights of the people. The different governments will control each other, at the same time that each will be controlled by itself.

Second.

It is of great importance in a republic not only to guard the society against the oppression of its rulers, but to guard one part of the society against the injustice of the other part. Different interests necessarily exist in different classes of citizens.

If a majority be united by a common interest, the rights of the minority will be insecure.

There are but two methods of providing against this evil: the one by creating a will in the community independent of the majority -- that is, of the society itself; the other, by comprehending in the society so many separate descriptions of citizens as will render an unjust combination of a majority of the whole very improbable, if not impracticable.

The first method prevails in all governments possessing an hereditary or self-appointed authority.

This, at best, is but a precarious security; because a power independent of the society may as well espouse the unjust views of the major, as the rightful interests of the minor party, and may possibly be turned against both parties.

The second method will be exemplified in the federal republic of the United States.

Whilst all authority in it will be derived from and dependent on the society, the society itself will be broken into so many parts, interests, and classes of citizens, that the rights of individuals, or of the minority, will be in little danger from interested combinations of the majority.

In a free government the security for civil rights must be the same as that for religious rights.

It consists in the one case in the multiplicity of interests, and in the other in the multiplicity of sects.

The degree of security in both cases will depend on the number of interests and sects; and this may be presumed to depend on the extent of country and number of people comprehended under the same government.

This view of the subject must particularly recommend a proper federal system to all the sincere and considerate friends of republican government, since it shows that in exact proportion as the territory of the Union may be formed into more circumscribed Confederacies, or States oppressive combinations of a majority will be facilitated: the best security, under the republican forms, for the rights of every class of citizens, will be diminished: and consequently the stability and independence of some member of the government, the only other security, must be proportionately increased.

Justice is the end of government.

It is the end of civil society.

It ever has been and ever will be pursued until it be obtained, or until liberty be lost in the pursuit.

In a society under the forms of which the stronger faction can readily unite and oppress the weaker, anarchy may as truly be said to reign as in a state of nature, where the weaker individual is not secured against the violence of the stronger; and as, in the latter state, even the stronger individuals are prompted, by the uncertainty of their condition, to submit to a government which may protect the weak as well as themselves; so, in the former state, will the more powerful factions or parties be gradnally induced, by a like motive, to wish for a government which will protect all parties, the weaker as well as the more powerful.

It can be little doubted that if the State of Rhode Island was separated from the Confederacy and left to itself, the insecurity of rights under the popular form of government within such narrow limits would be displayed by such reiterated oppressions of factious majorities that some power altogether independent of the people would soon be called for by the voice of the very factions whose misrule had proved the necessity of it.

In the extended republic of the United States, and among the great variety of interests, parties, and sects which it embraces, a coalition of a majority of the whole society could seldom take place on any other principles than those of justice and the general good; whilst there being thus less danger to a minor from the will of a major party, there must be less pretext, also, to provide for the security of the former, by introducing into the government a will not dependent on the latter, or, in other words, a will independent of the society itself.

It is no less certain than it is important, notwithstanding the contrary opinions which have been entertained, that the larger the society, provided it lie within a practical sphere, the more duly capable it will be of self-government.

And happily for the republican cause, the practicable sphere may be carried to a very great extent, by a judicious modification and mixture of the federal principle. ~ Madison, writing as Publius.

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