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FReeper Book Club: The Debate over the Constitution, Federalist #1
A Publius/Billthedrill Essay | 22 February 2010 | Publius & Billthedrill

Posted on 02/22/2010 7:42:21 AM PST by Publius

The Nationalists Become the Federalists

To an American of 1787, a “federalist” was one who supported a federated system of government in which the rights of the states were balanced against a central authority, something that would have best described the outlook of the States’ Men. But as the debate began, the States’ Men quickly took control of the discussion. Alexander Hamilton sensed the tide turning against the proposed Constitution and decided to act.

But first Hamilton had to frame the debate to his advantage, and his first move was to appropriate the term “Federalist” for his cause, which was really the cause of the Nationalists at the Convention. The States’ Men were caught in a trap and were forced to define themselves as “Anti-Federalists”, which they truly were not.

Hamilton and his collaborators, John Jay and James Madison, decided to opt for quality. The prose style of these learned men differs from the writings in opposition to the Constitution. All three were gifted word-smiths, and Hamilton clearly enjoyed bowling his opponents over with legal logic coupled with fine writing.

Hamilton had started in life as a businessman in the West Indies and had gone to King’s College – now Columbia University – to study medicine. Dropping out to go to war, he joined an artillery battery and became its commander. Following the war, he “read law” to learn the trade and hung out his shingle, quickly becoming the top earning attorney in New York City. He was a gifted raconteur and an eagerly sought after guest at dinner parties where he regaled his partners with his wit and intellectual brilliance. In his contributions to the Federalist Papers, Hamilton carries over his wit and brilliance from the dinner party to the printed page.

Federalist #1

General Introduction

Alexander Hamilton, 27 October 1787

1 To the People of the State of New York:

***

2 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.

3 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.

4 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.

5 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.

***

6 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.

7 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.

8 But this is a thing more ardently to be wished than seriously to be expected.

9 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.

***

10 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.

***

11 It is not, however, my design to dwell upon observations of this nature.

12 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.

13 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.

14 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.

15 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.

16 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.

17 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.

18 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.

19 For in politics, as in religion, it is equally absurd to aim at making proselytes by fire and sword.

20 Heresies in either can rarely be cured by persecution.

***

21 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.

22 A torrent of angry and malignant passions will be let loose.

23 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.

24 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.

25 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.

26 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.

27 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.

28 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.

***

29 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.

30 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.

31 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.

32 I am convinced that this is the safest course for your liberty, your dignity and your happiness.

33 I affect not reserves which I do not feel.

34 I will not amuse you with an appearance of deliberation when I have decided.

35 I frankly acknowledge to you my convictions, and I will freely lay before you the reasons on which they are founded.

36 The consciousness of good intentions disdains ambiguity.

37 I shall not, however, multiply professions on this head.

38 My motives must remain in the depository of my own breast.

39 My arguments will be open to all and may be judged of by all.

40 They shall at least be offered in a spirit which will not disgrace the cause of truth.

***

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

***

42 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.

***

43 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.

44 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. *

45 This doctrine will in all probability be gradually propagated till it has votaries enough to countenance an open avowal of it.

46 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.

47 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.

48 This shall accordingly constitute the subject of my next address.

***

[*] The same idea, tracing the arguments to their consequences, is held out in several of the late publications against the new Constitution.

Hamilton’s Critique

Now the battle is truly joined. Hamilton’s goal is to frame the discussion. He makes the point that personal interest and public interest are not necessarily in opposition, but that one must guard against the persuasions of those for whom private interest is the prime motivator.

7 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.

Hamilton recognizes the tendency of vested interest to defend itself against ambition, stating that opposition to the Constitution as proposed is not necessarily the act of a person motivated by either – while leaving the tacit implication that it might be, as well. He calls for reasoned debate.

19 For in politics, as in religion, it is equally absurd to aim at making proselytes by fire and sword.

Hamilton wrote from the distance of only 150 years from the time when Europe attempted precisely that in the Thirty Years’ War. It was a lesson as recent to him as those of the Civil War are to modern Americans. Truly the 17th Century had proven a terrifying model with continental Europe scoured to the ground by armies marching to a toxic mix of religion and politics with Britain following in its own Civil Wars for many of the same reasons. The English throne had been toppled, and the French one that had avoided most of the worst excesses of the Thirty Years’ War would find itself foundering in a rising tide of fierce political enthusiasm before the 18th Century was over.

Then there is a hint of what is to come.

27 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.

This is, of course, debatable. Since Hamilton’s time, Americans have witnessed outrageous abuses stemming from both poles of this continuum. What he is implying is that those opposed to the adoption of the Constitution, who do so on the basis of emotional appeals toward the welfare of the common people, are to be suspected as potential despots themselves. It is a clever and disingenuous appeal.

28 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.

Hamilton’s reference is to ancient history, the demagogues of Athens and the overturning of the Roman Republic by Lucius Cornelius Sulla. The latter is a topic addressed at some length by Niccolo Machiavelli in his Discourses On Livy, a work that was familiar to all of the educated principals of the debates over the Constitution. It is clear that they realized they were forming a republic, and that they must construct it to guard against the abuses and usurpations of the past.

It is a topic on which educated, passionate opponents could honorably disagree, then and now. How it took shape and how well the eventual product withstood the objections of its opponents and the compromises that shaped its final form is the lesson of history.

Discussion Topics

Coming Thursday, February 25

John DeWit #2


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Free Republic
KEYWORDS: federalistpapers; freeperbookclub

1 posted on 02/22/2010 7:42:21 AM PST by Publius
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To: 14themunny; 21stCenturion; 300magnum; A Strict Constructionist; abigail2; AdvisorB; Aggie Mama; ...
FReeper Book Club

The Debate over the Constitution

John DeWitt #1

Ping! The thread has been posted.

Earlier threads:

FReeper Book Club: The Debate over the Constitution
5 Oct 1787, Centinel #1
6 Oct 1787, James Wilson’s Speech at the State House
8 Oct 1787, Federal Farmer #1
9 Oct 1787, Federal Farmer #2
18 Oct 1787, Brutus #1
22 Oct 1787, John DeWitt #1

2 posted on 02/22/2010 7:44:48 AM PST by Publius
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To: Publius

Are you using the ‘Library of America’ edition?


3 posted on 02/22/2010 7:46:40 AM PST by Borges
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To: 14themunny; 21stCenturion; 300magnum; A Strict Constructionist; abigail2; AdvisorB; Aggie Mama; ...

Woops! It’s Federalist #1, not the other one. My bad.


4 posted on 02/22/2010 7:48:34 AM PST by Publius
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To: Borges

Liberty Online after editing to our format.


5 posted on 02/22/2010 7:49:55 AM PST by Publius
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To: Publius

My personal distaste for Hamilton the man make any objective reading of his writing quite difficult for me but I WILL try!


6 posted on 02/22/2010 7:55:03 AM PST by Bigun ("It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere." Voltaire)
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To: Publius

marked for later study


7 posted on 02/22/2010 8:18:47 AM PST by Tamatoa (Fight for our America, Fight for our Country I fought to defend!!!)
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To: Publius

Thank you.


8 posted on 02/22/2010 8:45:36 AM PST by Albertafriend
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To: Publius
He opens up by attacking the detractors. He questions their motives, but not his own. He pulls the old politicians trick of saying something like "I could point out that my opponents bed down with farm animals, but I'm not going to do it!"
9 posted on 02/22/2010 8:49:02 AM PST by Huck (Q: How can you tell a party is in the majority? A: They're complaining about the fillibuster.)
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To: Bigun

You and me both, Bigun.


10 posted on 02/22/2010 8:49:30 AM PST by Huck (Q: How can you tell a party is in the majority? A: They're complaining about the fillibuster.)
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To: Publius

I’d like to see Brutus and Hamilton’s commentary on the Judiciary put side by side. Brutus 78-84 vs. Hamilton 70-something-80 something. I think Brutus nails that whole section, and to me, it should have been decisive. Fatal defects in Article 3.


11 posted on 02/22/2010 8:52:18 AM PST by Huck (Q: How can you tell a party is in the majority? A: They're complaining about the fillibuster.)
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To: Huck

I consider Hamilton to be a thoroughly dishonest and loathsome individual but that’s just me.


12 posted on 02/22/2010 8:59:40 AM PST by Bigun ("It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere." Voltaire)
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To: Publius

bttt


13 posted on 02/22/2010 9:05:33 AM PST by JDoutrider (Send G. Soros home! Hell isn't half full!)
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To: Bigun

Would that have anything to do with his support of unconstitutional central banks?


14 posted on 02/22/2010 9:28:58 AM PST by hoosierham (Waddaya mean Freedom isn't free ?;will you take a credit card?)
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To: Tamatoa

Take your time. The trend I’ve discovered is that these threads will generate discussion for a week or more for those students who really take this material seriously.


15 posted on 02/22/2010 9:34:50 AM PST by Publius
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To: Huck
He opens up by attacking the detractors.

Put yourself in his position. For three weeks, the States' Men had control of the debate with only a short speech from James Wilson of Pennsylvania to support the Constitution.

Meanwhile, a Pennsylvania jurist's son has fired an artillery barrage and has hit some targets. An anonymous writer from New York has dissected the document like a surgeon and exposed significant flaws. A learned and respected jurist from New York has torn Hamilton a new one. An anonymous lawyer from Massachusetts has played the prosecutor and -- come Thursday -- will issue a detailed bill of indictment against Hamilton's project.

Hamilton needed to get the debate back into his court, and the only way to do this was to hit back first and lay out his course of action as superior.

It's interesting to note that the next four Federalist Papers were about foreign affairs and were written by his fellow New York lawyer, John Jay. They will come up next week and the week after.

16 posted on 02/22/2010 9:51:52 AM PST by Publius
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To: Publius
Under the Articles of Confederation the government was nearly nonexistent. The weakness was such that it did not have power to enforce the terms of the Treaty of Paris which ended the Revolutionary War.

Under the treaty, pre-war debt of former colonists were to be paid. Since there was no judiciary under the Articles, British creditors could not sue in court.

In retaliation, the Brits continued to occupy frontier forts and lands that should have been transferred to the US. The Brits also incited indian raids on American frontiersmen and their families.

Most of these prewar debts were owed by southern planters and most of them were owed by Virginians. So yes, there was a self serving interest among some powerful people to retain a fundamentally weak government.

Then, as today there were people who put their narrow self interest ahead of their country.

Under the Constitution the terms of the treaty were honored and America could expand westward.

17 posted on 02/22/2010 10:13:07 AM PST by Jacquerie (Support and defend our beloved Constitution.)
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To: hoosierham

In my view EVERYTHING Hamilton did was for one purpose only and that purpose is to further the personal interests of Mr. Hamilton!

He was, IMHO, the original (at least in so far as the United States is concerned) “what’s in it for me” fellow.


18 posted on 02/22/2010 10:39:44 AM PST by Bigun ("It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere." Voltaire)
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To: Bigun

How has that affected your view of Washington, post-war? What is your opinion of Washington, post-war?


19 posted on 02/22/2010 11:01:28 AM PST by Huck (Q: How can you tell a party is in the majority? A: They're complaining about the fillibuster.)
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To: Publius
A cannonade of condescension addressed to 'The People'. No mention anywhere of the tendency of power to corrupt, just the effect of corrupting influences.

Hamilton clears the High Road with a whiff of patronizing declarations.

10 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.

Then...

19 For in politics, as in religion, it is equally absurd to aim at making proselytes by fire and sword.

What the ???? He just fought in a revolution to throw off an oppressive government. He had threatened to resign his commission had he not been given the opportunity to draw blood. Just as a lack of Judicial effectiveness will spawn vigilantism, the lack of an effective government will result in an armed revolution. Perhaps he was all too aware of the power of an armed opponent. Can't we all just play nice?

25 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.

Although the sentence is rather convoluted I think the gist is that it's faulty logic to put individual rights above those of the 'public good', however that might be defined. Erring on the side of our God given Rights is admonished. With no direct reference to 'public good' maintaining or strengthening those Rights I must assume he intended the public good to trump.

20 posted on 02/22/2010 11:57:19 AM PST by whodathunkit (The fickle and ardent in any community are the proper tools for establishing despotic government.)
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To: Publius
With now over 200 years of history behind us, and an array of problems facing us, some of which are related to the path away from a currency of intrinsic value, banking, and other assorted departures from the 1787 Constitution's provisions, perhaps this might be a good time to look at a historical point of view from closer to 1787.

I always find that to be John Quincy Adams' "Jubilee" Address before the New York Historical Society. Not a mere history from a professor or historian, Adams' account, it seems to me, comes from an authoritative source, when one considers his mentors, Abigail and John Adams, as well as his service in various capacities in the new government.

There, he reviews, at great length, the great philosophical departures from the Declaration of Independence encountered under the Articles of Confederation, and the progress made under the 1787 Constitution, which incorporated the ideas of liberty enshrined in the Declaration and, in his opinion, were a return to the principles of the Declaration.

21 posted on 02/22/2010 12:00:31 PM PST by loveliberty2
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To: whodathunkit
What the ????

Don't forget that there were mobs running around New York City destroying printing presses as a part of this debate. I think this is what Hamilton is referring to.

22 posted on 02/22/2010 12:15:24 PM PST by Publius
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To: Huck
How has that affected your view of Washington, post-war?

Not much really. I think Washington was well aware of Hamilton's ambitions and used him to his advantage. Remember that it was Washington who warned us against political faction (parties) war and said "Government is not reason, it is not eloquence. It is force, and like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master."

23 posted on 02/22/2010 12:29:35 PM PST by Bigun ("It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere." Voltaire)
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To: Publius
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.

While we may not all agree on Hamilton's motives, we must consider the words he spoke above. The Articles were in shambles, and the Constitutional Convention came together to amend them; rather, a new document was founded and sent to the states for ratification. It was here that the destiny of the republic was to be determined.

Fast forward to today; our federal system of government is a shell of what it used to stand for: liberty. The central government constantly bullies the states with useless programs. 0bama constantly tries to move us further away from the Constitution that our Founders set as a rigid framework for our nation.

Like the legislatures and citizens of New York in 1787, we now have a choice. Defend the republic and "re-ratify" the Constitution, or die. The wrong choice by the people will extinguish the flame of freedom and the world will continue its plunge towards despotism and nanny-state policies.

It's your choice America; make the right one; choose liberty.

24 posted on 02/22/2010 1:39:38 PM PST by UAConservative (Audemus Jura Nostra Defendere)
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To: Publius
Good evening.

The general population needs to read this, and all of the Federalist papers.

Never mind, I would be happy if the general population were well versed in our Constitution.

5.56mm

25 posted on 02/22/2010 7:24:35 PM PST by M Kehoe
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To: whodathunkit

It struck me that way, too, and it must have occurred to others who demanded the inclusion of the Bill of Rights. Yet it’s ironic that the state government were the ones who insisted on the bill of rights. In some way, the ideal of self interest conflicted the perversion of self interest. The states had experienced oppression by the King, and then freedom, which was failing them. It’s that taste of individual liberty that we seem to lack today.


26 posted on 02/22/2010 8:09:21 PM PST by sig226 (Bring back Jimmy Carter!)
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To: sig226
"It’s that taste of individual liberty that we seem to lack today."

Amen. And that's the nub of it.

27 posted on 02/23/2010 6:27:56 AM PST by YHAOS (you betcha!)
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To: Bigun
I don't know. For me, the more I study Washington post-war, it gets tougher and tougher to put him on the pedestal. I always automatically revered him. Who knows? Maybe he's was right. Maybe we are stuck with this much centralized government. Maybe it's the best of all possible worlds. It's a shame if true.

I guess it comes down to whether you see the Constitution as the source of the problem or not. I think after 200 years of steady and unchecked growth of national power, it's a bit weak to simply say it'd be fine "if only." If only pigs could fly, I say.

Washington wanted America to be an empire. He used the word several times. He got his wish. Hamilton was right there with him. If anyone got used, it was Madison and Jefferson. Madison, who I also used to revere, comes off like a dupe.

28 posted on 02/23/2010 6:39:18 AM PST by Huck (Q: How can you tell a party is in the majority? A: They're complaining about the fillibuster.)
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To: Publius

Hey Publius, that reminds me. Do you have any good research on the identity of Brutus? It seems there is a loose consensus, unproved, that it was Robert Yates. But I question that. Brutus’s essays on the judiciary are some of his best (implied powers being the other real deadly critique), but he mentions at some point that he is NOT expert in the law, and is merely extrapolating. Was that supposed to be a lie? I don’t know. Pity to not know his identity, but pretty crazy, too.


29 posted on 02/23/2010 6:42:14 AM PST by Huck (Q: How can you tell a party is in the majority? A: They're complaining about the fillibuster.)
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To: Huck

The standard references that one finds on the Net seem to agree that Yates was Brutus. He may have made that comment about not being versed in the law as an attempt to disguise his identity.


30 posted on 02/23/2010 12:33:16 PM PST by Publius
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To: bamahead

bookmark


31 posted on 02/23/2010 9:39:36 PM PST by bamahead (Few men desire liberty; most men wish only for a just master. -- Sallust)
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To: Publius
Is anyone using this source for materials related to these discussions?

Essays on the Constitution of the United States, published during its discussion by the people 1787-1788 (1892)

Author: Ford, Paul Leicester, 1865-1902; Sullivan, James, 1744-1808; Winthrop, James, 1752-1821; Gerry, Elbridge, 1744-1814; Ellsworth, Oliver, 1745-1807; Williams, William, 1731-1811; Williamson, Hugh, 1735-1819 Subject: United States; United States Publisher: Brooklyn, N.Y., Historical printing club Possible copyright status: NOT_IN_COPYRIGHT Language: English Call number: AEO-6610 Digitizing sponsor: MSN Book contributor: Robarts - University of Toronto Collection: toronto

Description Sullivan, J. The letters of "Cassius".- Winthrop, J. The letters of "Agrippa".- Gerry, E. Replies to "A landholder".- Ellsworth, O. Letters of "A landholder".- Williams, W. A letter to "A landholder".- Sherman, R. The letters of "A countryman".- Sherman, R. The letters of "A citizen of New Haven".- Yates, R. The letters of "Sydney".- Brackenridge, H.H. Cursory remarks on the Constitution.- Chase, S. A letter of "Caution".- Carroll, D. A letter of "A friend to the Constitution".- Martin, L. Letters.- Roane, S. A letter of "A plain dealer".- Williamson, H. Remarks on the Constitution.- Pinckney, C. A letter of "A steady and open Republican".- Bibliography.- Index. 1. U.S. Constitution. 2. U.S. Constitution - Bibl. U.S. - Constitutional history - Sources. I. Sullivan, James, 1744-1808. II. Winthrop, James, 1752-1821. III. Gerry, Elbridge, 1744-1814. IV. Ellsworth, Oliver, 1745-1807. V. Williams, William, 1731-1811. VI. Sherman, Roger, 1721-1793. VII. Clinton, George, 1739-1812. VIII. Hamilton, Alexander, 1757-1804. IX. Yates, Robert, 1738-1801. X. Brackenridge, Hugh Henry, 1748-1816. XI. Chase, Samuel, 1741-1811. XII. Carroll, Daniel, 1756-1829. XIII. Martin, Luther, 1744-1826. XIV. Roane, Spencer, 1762-1822. XV. Williamson, Hugh, 1735-1819. XVI. Pinckney, Charles, 1858-1824

I have found the Univ. of Toronto site to be a useful place to find readable texts of many other rare documents as well.

32 posted on 02/24/2010 9:44:24 AM PST by loveliberty2
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To: Publius
I'm a little late to this thread, but I'm beginning a self study of the Federalist Papers and I was hoping that I could ask if anyone is willing to offer an interpretation of certain sections the meanings of which elude me.
For instance, from Federalist Paper #1, I'm unsure of what Hamilton is about here:
"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."
Do you suppose any posters from when this thread originally rolled out would be willing to go through the Papers again?
TIA
Also, I would like to be included in your ping list.
33 posted on 07/27/2013 6:35:59 AM PDT by Amagi (Buying "Green" means purchasing inferior quality at increased cost.)
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To: Amagi; Billthedrill
Ping to Billthedrill for the previous post.

I rarely invoke this ping list, but you're on it.

34 posted on 07/27/2013 8:43:05 AM PDT by Publius
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