Quotes from history's losers,Submitted by dialtone1984 on Thu, 06/28/2012 - 23:06
the Anti-Federalists. Looking back on it, they were right, the Constitution was (and is, and will always be) a Trojan horse for tyranny. "Eat this sweetish segment or spit it out. You are free."
"As this government will not enjoy the confidence of the people, but be executed by force, it will be a very expensive and burthensome government. The standing army must be numerous, and as a further support, it will be the policy of this government to multiply officers in every department; judges, collectors, tax-gathers, excisemen, and the whole host of revenue officers will swarm over the land, devouring the hard earnings of the industrious. Like the locusts of old, impoverishing and desolating all before them.
"...it is the opinion of the most celebrated writers on government, and confirmed by uniform experience, that very extensive territory cannot be governed on the principles of freedom, otherwise than by a confederation of republics, possessing all the powers of internal government; but united in the management of their general, and foreign concerns."
-The Address and Reasons of Dissent of the Minority of the Convention, of the State of Pennsylvania
"If the men who at different times have been entrusted to form plans of government for the world, had been really actuated by no other motives than the public good, the condition of human nature in all ages would have been widely different from that which has been exhibited to us in history."
-An Old Whig
"BEFORE MARTIAL law is declared to be the supreme law of the land, and your character of free citizens be changed to that of the subjects of a military king - which are necessary consequences of the adoption of the proposed constitution - let me admonish you in the name of sacred liberty, to make a solemn pause.
"A conspiracy against the freedom of America, both deep and dangerous, has been formed by an infernal junto of demagogues. Our thirteen free commonwealths are to be consolidated into one despotic monarch.
"Who can deny but the president general will be a king to all intents and purposes, and one of the most dangerous kind too - a king elected to command a standing army."
"The name of Federalists, or Federal men, grew up at New York and in the eastern states, some time before the calling of the Convention, to denominate such as were attached to the general support of the United Sates, in opposition to those who preferred local and particular advantages."
- George Bryan
"These [Federalists] consist generally of the NOBLE order of C[incinnatu]s, holders of public securities, men of great wealth and expectations of public office, Bankers and Lawyers: these with their train of dependents form the Aristocratick combination."
"You must risk much, by indispensably placing trusts of the greatest magnitude, into the hands of individuals who ambition for power, and aggrandizement, will oppress and grind you. Where, from the vast extent of your territory, and the complication of interests, the science of government will become intricate and perplexed, and too mysterious for you to understand and observe..."
-George Clinton (not the Funky Parliamentarian)
"I question whether the world ever saw in any period of it, a court of justice invested with such immense powers, and yet placed in a situation so little responsible."
"It is to be lamented that the interested and designing have availed themselves so successfully of the present crisis, and under the specious pretense of having discovered a panacea for all the ills of the people, they are about establishing a system of government, that will prove more destructive to them than the wooden horse filled with soldiers did in ancient times to the city of troy."
"These lawyers, and men of learning, and moneyed men, that talk so finely, and gloss over matters so smoothly, to make us poor illiterate people swallow down the pill, expect to get into Congress themselves; they expect to be the managers of this Constitution, and get all the power and all the money into their own hands, and then they will swallow up all us little folks, like the great Leviathan...yes, just as the whale swallowed up Jonah."
-Amos Singletary, Delegate to the MA Ratifying Convention
Still interested? There is plenty more. Here is a link to the collection of Anti-Federalist writings:
Oh yes, and one other thing: I wish you and yours a Happy Secession Day this July 4th!
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"We are vain, like other nations. We wish to make a noise in the world; and feel hurt that Europeans are not so attentive to America in peace, as they were to America in war. We are also no doubt, desirous of cutting a figure in history. Should we not reflect, that quiet is happiness? That content and pomp are incompatible? I have either read or heard this truth, which the Americans should never forget: That the silence of historians is the surest record of the happiness of a people."
-Author Unknown, 1788
"Order and security are immediately sought by the distracted people beneath the shelter of equal laws and the salutary restraints of regular government; and if this be not attainable, absolute power is assumed by the one or a few, who shall be the most enterprising and successful. If anarchy, therefore, were the inevitable consequence of rejecting the new Constitution, it would be infinitely better to incur it, for even then there would be at least the chance of a good government rising out of licentiousness."
"What then may we expect if the new constitution be adopted as it now stands? The great will struggle for power, honor and wealth; the poor become a prey to avarice, insolence and oppression. And while some are studying to supplant their neighbors, and other striving to keep their stations, one villain will wink at the oppression of another, the people be fleeced, and the public business neglected. From despotism and tyranny good Lord deliver us."
"The liberties of a people are in danger from a large standing army, not only because the rulers may employ them for the purposes of supporting themselves in any usurpations of power, which they may see proper to exercise, but there is great hazard, that an army will subvert the forms of the government, under whose authority, they are raised, and establish one, according to the pleasure of their leader."