Jan 23 - US constitution and american institutions

Jan 23 - US constitution and american institutions - Jan...

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Jan 23. Class Notes: 1. Overarching Problems: US is essentially a big farm with weak coastal protection. US framers are 1 st generation statesman, their focus: - Get the government to work. - Establish precedence - Get economy working - Create a defendable state. 2. Policy Responses, by playing off individuals such as England France and through Government trial and error: - US must re-order the economy - Make a cohesive economy 3. So What? - Individual states are fearful of enemies, including neighboring states. Consequently, competing states are constantly trying to one-up each other. - Framers realized in order for the American states to become independent there must be some sort of organization. 4. Bargaining for Breathing Room 1790-1796ish - Framers realize we first must have a strong economy, the US can not be a big farm. - Adam Smith states that the US must have a strong competitive economy, in this he presents the idea of having Free Trade as a catalyst for building a strong economy. 5. Constitution’s Substance + - Constitution wants to solve problems incrementally. Democracy is very rare, only happens in places that are safe. US doesn’t have any neighboring immediate threats which allows democracy to flourish. -Constitution is flexible and vague, that’s why it has lasted. Freedom and Equality take diff. meanings over time. 6. Digression of Atlantic Slavery - Legitimate Illegitimate very fast. White people trusted one another more because of the black “outsider”, thus slavery creates hypertension. -Abolitions: Quakers gain support by bartering with votes.
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This note was uploaded on 04/08/2008 for the course POLS W3631 taught by Professor Parent during the Spring '08 term at Columbia.

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Jan 23 - US constitution and american institutions - Jan...

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