american_govt_paper

american_govt_paper - Stanislav Drapkin Political Science...

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Stanislav Drapkin Political Science 1101 American Government Professor Bolce The Anti-Federalists were unified in their conviction that liberty could only be secured under a small republic “in which the rulers would be physically close to - and closely checked by - the ruled” (Bolce). Brutus, as he called himself in the published papers, argues that the constitution being proposed will form a large republic, and as such may become a unitary despotism. His argument centers on the possible problems of large republics as well as two clauses, within the proposed constitution, that may be interpreted in such a way that would inevitably form such a tyranny. James Madison, in Federalist Papers 10 and 51, addresses some of the issues Brutus argues. The papers portray the proposed constitution to form a large republic in which a system of checks exists to prevent misuse of such authority. In depth is described the problem of factions and the ability of the proposed constitution to control them. This in essence would serve to protect liberty and prevent the adverse from oppressing the virtue of the people. Brutus formulates that the homogeneity and virtue of society is to “preserve the invaluable blessings of liberty, to secure the inestimable rights of mankind, and promote human happiness” (Brutus.1.III). United “under heaven” (Brutus.1.III) the people are faced with a decision to accept or decline the proposed constitution in order to protect such liberties. He stresses the importance of such a decision cautioning that, even though flaws may be later amended, granting such power to a ruling body would unavoidably be difficult to regain. He then questions the benefit for the United States of the formation of a large republic to be content with such responsibility, or the superiority of small republics in the same capacity; he moves to prove the latter.
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Article 1 section 8 describing the necessary and proper clause , and article 6 the supremacy clause within the proposed constitution, are of extreme concern to Brutus. He describes these two provisions to be intrinsically vague, claiming that the government would have indefinite power and ability to control the people and states. He depicts in many ways in which the government could abuse such power including what he believes is most important, the power to tax. This would eventually abridge the confederation and lead to a unitary government.
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american_govt_paper - Stanislav Drapkin Political Science...

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