To Amend or Not to Amend The Articles of Confederation is the first governing mechanism devised for the United States. As the precedent, many Americans, especially the Foundering Fathers, knew that it had many weaknesses, but that’s precisely what they intended: a Confederacy. Out of fear of replicating another British monarchy, the colonists attempted to construct an extremely weak government and avoid concentrating powers in the hands of a few individuals. However to assess the effectiveness of the government set up by the Articles of Confederation it is paramount to discuss the problems faced by the country during the post-Revolutionary decade from 1781 to 1789 and to what how effectively and to what extent those issues were dealt with. However, by doing this more problems were created than the government could solve. Additionally, the word “effective” is a bit ambiguous. In terms of securing personal liberties and continuing the American lifestyle, the Articles did a fantastic job but in terms of national security and building world superpower country, the Articles failed miserably. In other words, while the Articles may have its advantages inherent to a Confederacy, the various problems facing the country such as an economic crisis, foreign threats, and a lack of general unity inevitably created an ineffective and feeble method of governing the new nation. Primarily one of the main causes of the Revolutionary War was to become political independent from the British Crown and instate a form of a weak central government to protect individual state rights. However, the Coalition of States have yet to actually become economically independent. Both before and after the Revolutionary War, states have continued to export millions of dollars worth, averaging around 5 million pre-revolution and 4.5 million post-revolution. (Doc B). In addition, the interstate commerce between states were more like 13 different nations with 13 different currencies floating around. Even more, Congress and the States shared the ability to coin money and issue currency, which quickly prompts inflation as too much money was floating around with no gold or sliver to back up the currency. Shays’ Rebellion was actually caused by the lack of trust and instability of the Massachusetts dollar prompting a downward spiral of farm foreclosure and making farmers even less able to pay off the debt. Furthermore, because Congress itself was denied the right to tax, they were also denied the power to excise regulatory tariffs or taxes. State tariffs within the states would have caused prices to skyrocket every time it caused a merchant to travel state boundaries. Urban artisans would have favored tariffs to protect their profits and merchants would have enjoyed open markets around the world both of which Congress was incapable to achieving. Even when Congress recommended some impost on imported goods, Rhode Island unanimously decided to ignore that action, because it harmed state interests, even those it might have helped national interests. (Doc A). On top of that, since Congress had no ways of raising revenue or steady sources of money besides “requesting money from state legislature,” which rarely occurred, the U.S. wasn’t able to pay back the war-related debts, make good on public bonds, or even properly pay veterans. (Doc C). The current economic situation was extremely precarious between a national deficiency of assets and a fluctuating dollar; it’s almost to conduct business within the United States or with other nations. In fact, because the nation was so splintered nations would probably sign treaties or other types of agreements with multiple parties besides one single state. On the other hand, relations with foreign powers were especially hazardous. Spain controlled the Mississippi thus impeding Western expansion and depriving colonists of a major transportation and trade route. In addition, Spain like other major powers looked down on the
SUPA US History
27 October 2014
The Articles of Confederation is an agreement between the thirteen
original states; it
slacking federal government before the current
went into effect.
Articles of Confederation was created to find a solution to common problem. It was the first
official government of the United States, it had many weaknesses
. One of the main weaknesses
was the failure to regulate trade (Class Notes). The states would…
The Articles of Confederation gave the US government very little power over very essential things, such as taxation and raising an army. Without the power to impose taxes, the central government had a hard time paying off its debts to other countries and paying its soldiers that fought in the war. It also severely limited the effectiveness of the central government by requiring 9 out of 13 votes for a law to pass while 13 out of 13 had to agree for amending a law. The central government only had…
Articles of Confederation
Well with these things about between Hamilton and Jefferson took off as a good competition on the debate between the Federalists and the Antifederalists. When it came to these two people during this time, they were arguing over the laws and rules for the health benefits of each state. First for Hamilton, he had really thought that the central government acting’s would be interested in the commerce and the industries. The only thing is that Hamilton had really brought the…
Articles of Confederation
A. National government weak with little real authoriity.
1. Executive selected by members of Congress, one year term, only a figurehead with no real power.
2. No judiciary.
3. Congress given broad powers; set quotas for men and money which could be asked for from the states; make commercial and other Treaties; conduct war and foreign affairs, including negotiation with Indians; manage public lands in the west, limit state boundaries, and admit new states; borrow money…
Although the Articles of Confederation were the building blocks of America, it had many downfalls such as the failure to impose taxes, having the control over the interstate commerce, and amending documents. These faults needed to be changed as soon as possible to make create a better government, also giving some rights to the people and being able to control the trade between states.
The Articles of Confederation had many faults and one of the main ones was levying taxes. The congress could request…
The Articles of Confederation was a work of art for that time period, a genius idea. It was a great starting point for the United States history. It helped shape this country to what it is now. Without it, the American government today would not be the same. Without it, the Constitution would not have been created in its perfect entirety. Life without either of these documents would be dramatically different for every single American citizen. Heck, there probably would not even be a United States…
There are nine major factors that Articles of Confederation changed to the U.S. Constitution. Although the change created a weak central government, a unicameral, no executive branch and no federal court system it achieved peace treaty with Great Britain, develop territories for statehood and made department that became president’s cabinet. There were two major groups at that time: federalists and antifederalists. Federalists were loose constructionists and wealthy merchants who supported the constitution…
Washington (Links to an external site.), and Letter from Thomas Jefferson to James Madison (Links to an external site.), all from the Harcourt Web site.
You are a resident of the new country who is interested in the debate about the future of the Articles of Confederation. Write a letter to George Washington (you do consider him the father of the nation, after all) that explains your position on the matter. Make sure your letter discusses recent positive and negative events before moving on to a clear statement…
AP US History
10 August 2014
Articles of Confederation – Essay
From 1777 to 1789, the Articles of Confederation provided the United States with an ineffective government – though it was essential to the creation of the Constitution – that simply did not resolve the economic issues being faced post-Revolution.
Two challenges the nations faced under the Articles were the inability of Congress to levy taxes as well as the lack of power to regulate commerce. These two…
U.S. History Essay
A Stronger Government for a New Country
The Articles of Confederation were successful in unifying the independent colonies during the American Revolution but did not adequately provide a strong central government, so were therefore nearly completely replaced by the Constitution, which more specifically outlined powers of the government. The weak and ineffective Articles resulted in the Constitutional Convention meeting in Philadelphia on May 25, 1787 to create a new…