The Spirit of American Government

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Cosimo, Inc., 01.05.2006. - 420 страница
Democracy-government by the people, or directly responsible to them-was not the object which the framers of the American Constitution had in view, but the very thing which they wished to avoid. In the convention which drafted that instrument it was recognized that democratic ideas had made sufficient progress among the masses to put an insurmountable obstacle in the way of any plan of government which did not confer at least the form of political power upon the people. Accordingly the efforts of the Constitutional Convention were directed to the task of devising a system of government which was just popular enough not to excite general opposition and which at the same time gave to the people as little as possible of the substance of political power.-from "Chapter III: The Constitution Reactionary Document"It was written a century ago, in 1907, but this rethinking of the legacy of the American founding fathers continues to inspire historical revisionists today. The opening salvo in what was to become a cottage industry of conspiracy theories, this startling and angry work posits that the American Constitution is not, in fact, a bastion of power-to-the-people philosophy but is, rather, the result of a political plot by the economic elite of the colonies to retain as much supremacy as possible for themselves.A shattering blow to the iconic images of the men who made America, this is a provocative and shocking read.OF INTEREST TO: readers of American history, students of the culture warsJAMES ALLEN SMITH (1860-1926) was professor of political science at the University of Washington.

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CHAPTER I
3
Class influence as seen in statute and common law
10
Democracy in the early state constitutions
16
The Articles of Confederation
22
The Constitution a product of eighteenthcentury
28
The Significance of the Amendment Feature of
40
The amendments to the Constitution
47
Amendment of the Articles of Confederation
57
Influence of the Constitution upon the party system
210
Character of our party platforms
218
True party government impossible under our consti
226
Extension of the term of office of governor and mem
232
Influence of democracy upon the state constitutions
243
CHAPTER X
249
Hostility of the courts to municipal selfgovernment
254
Constitutional provisions limiting the power of
261

CHAPTER V
65
Hamiltons defense of the Federal judiciary
73
His desire to limit the power of the people
82
The Federalist appointments to the Supreme Bench
94
A monarchical survival
103
Character of the laws vetoed by the Supreme Court
110
The judicial veto in relation to treaties
123
The Checks and Balances of the Constitution
125
Relation of the theory of checks and balances
131
The framers fear of democracy
136
Subordination of the House of Representatives
138
Significance of the Presidents oath of office
146
Attitude of the fratners toward criticism of public
152
Federal versus national government
160
Origin and development of the doctrine of nullifica
168
Calhouns theory of the Constitution
174
The judiciary act of 1789
182
The House of Representatives an irresponsible body
191
The speakers power to thwart legislation
199
The Party System
203
The object of home rule provisions largely defeated
268
Fear of municipal democracy
279
Why our state governments have not been favorable
285
CHAPTER XI
291
The doctrine of vested rights
299
Individual Liberty and the Economic System
304
The laissez faire policy
310
The need of protection to labor
316
The policy of the Supreme Court a factor in corrupt
325
CHAPTER XIII
331
Three reforms needed in tlje case of the Senate
338
Power of twothirds of the states to call a consti
346
Reliance of the conservative classes on the courts
355
CHAPTER XIV
361
Decline in the efficacy of old restraints
364
The need of more publicity
372
CHAPTER XV
379
Democracy would make government a science
386
The scientific justification of democracys hostility
394
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