Essays Summary American Constitution

Essays Summary American Constitution-18
The Second Continental Congress convened in 1775 after the war began was the first true governing body for the 13 states. Two accomplishments were important to our current form of government, The Declaration of Independence which declared that Governments derive their power from the consent of the governed and designing the Articles of Confederation which became the constitution governing the states. This in turn resulted in the States convening the First Continental Congress in1774 with the purpose of petitioning King George III for a redress of their grievances and also to plan for economic retaliation through boycotts of British trade.

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The purpose of the Articles was to bind the 13 states together in a perpetual union characterized as a firm league of friendship with each other, but not a nation with a national government.

The states were reluctant to give up their sovereignty so the central government was made very weak with no powers to tax, raise armies, or regulate commerce between the states.

As an active Tea Party member, you should also familiarize yourself with the US Constitution which our members of Congress have sworn to uphold.

Read it and decide for yourself if our government officials have lived up to their sworn oath.

(The primary drawback of this book is the appendix; while it contains for reference the original Constitution and the first ten amendments, the other 17 amendments are not included.

Also, the absence of the Articles of Confederation, predecessor to the Constitution, is regrettable.) Several essays stand out. Nilsson’s essay, “Not in the Constitution,” carefully examines the context and meaning of the “general welfare” clause, oft-cited and terribly misunderstood.Still, the rediscovery of the Constitutional design has a long way to go.Several years ago, Robert Bork referred to the Ninth Amendment as an “inkblot.” Few conservatives expressed any dismay at Bork’s commentary.This essay should be read by every political science undergraduate student, every first-year law student, and every public official in America. There is no grant of plenary power to the national government; as Nilsson wrote, “Knowing what led up to the war, and reading the charges in the Declaration of Independence, can anyone for a minute think that the colonists generally, and the members of the convention specifically, would have adopted a constitution which granted general welfare powers to the federal government?” Clarence Carson’s essay on “The General Welfare” nicely complements the Nilsson essay.Robert Higgs’ essay regarding individual rights and the nature of government is a reality-based summary which should be widely read. Bradford’s contribution, “Not So Democratic,” is an outstanding essay regarding the profoundly “undemocratic” beliefs of the framers of the Constitution and the numerous antimajoritarian mechanisms within the document.Higgs destroys the false dichotomy between “human rights” and “property rights,” but not before reminding us that “[e]very government, ultimately if not immediately, relies on physical violence to enforce its rule.” Professor Dwight Lee’s piece on “The Political Economy of the U. Constitution” offers a particularly good review of the U. Supreme Court’s economic jurisprudence through 1986. Lee’s likening the government to the role of a referee in a football game is just the sort of illustration appropriate for those who seldom or never have thought through the implications of Constitution-related discussions they’ve heard before. The Constitution is no mere blueprint for populist, majoritarian government; the super-majority votes required for amending the Constitution obviously are structured and required to prevent tinkering by bare majorities.Alexander Hamilton and James Madison with help from John Jay in foreign affairs took on this task in the Federalist Papers focusing primarily on New York considered one of the states key to ratification but whose delegation except Hamilton walked out of the convention in protest without endorsing the draft. Hamilton, a lawyer, and Madison, an agrarian, were the leading experts on the draft and well qualified to defend it. The Boston Tea Party is a major link in the chain of events that resulted in the form of government we enjoy today. After the Tea Party, Britain responded with economic actions including a blockade of Boston Harbor.


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