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Federalist Papers

Revisiting the Fabric of American Empire

Alex Cacioppo | Posted 12.05.2014 | Politics
Alex Cacioppo

From the very beginning, the fabric of this country was woven with the threads of fear and division. In creating "a more perfect Union," as the preamble reads, we Americans still have a long way to go. The end of the path is not yet in sight.

What's Wrong With the Constitution?

Steven Shiffrin | Posted 11.25.2014 | Politics
Steven Shiffrin

If Alexander Hamilton were here, he would tell us that this is the way it should be. The Constitution is designed to prevent the people from having their way. It is a fundamentally undemocratic document designed to prevent change.

Hong Kong's Unique Opportunity to Forge a Middle Way

Nathan Gardels | Posted 11.20.2014 | World
Nathan Gardels

In its structure of combining selection and election, the emergent Hong Kong system is a kind of middle way between democratic consent and the idea of meritocratic guidance. In fact, the mechanism proposed to choose a chief executive is not so different from the Electoral College designed by American democracy's Founding Fathers. The idea, spelled out in Federalist Paper #68, was to "refine and enlarge the public views by passing them through the medium of a chosen body of citizens." But there needs to be a proper balance not yet achieved in Hong Kong.

Would You Pass the US Citizenship Test? Take This Quiz!

Michael Shammas | Posted 10.22.2014 | College
Michael Shammas

The following questions were taken from the list of 100 civics questions. Admittedly, these are some of the harder ones. Could you pass?

Anarchy in Congress: John Boehner Is No James Madison

Richard Brodsky | Posted 10.16.2013 | Politics
Richard Brodsky

Worry about our national credit, the economic consequence of default and the economy, to be sure. But the long-term danger of Washington shenanigans is an erosion in the ability of our legislative branch to do what it's supposed to do.

Legislative Looting: The Filibuster and the Founders

William D. Blake | Posted 10.27.2013 | Politics
William D. Blake

Designing a lasting system of democratic government required careful planning.  Thus, the debate over filibuster reform deserves more than platitudes from a middle school civics curriculum.

The World's Longest Running Seminar on Free Government

Christopher B. Nelson | Posted 10.06.2013 | College
Christopher B. Nelson

It is our civic duty to promote and participate in this uniquely American conversation, and to bequeath the continuing inquiry to the next generation.

Truman Says

Edward Headington | Posted 06.16.2013 | Los Angeles
Edward Headington

Just as we can all agree with then-presidential candidate Barack Obama that Ronald Reagan was a transformational president, so we can also draw inspiration from others before him like Harry Truman.

Scalia: Recuse or Resign

Brent Budowsky | Posted 05.14.2013 | Politics
Brent Budowsky

Scalia has a right to believe voting rights are a "perpetuation of racial entitlement" for blacks and Hispanics, but should promote this repellent and biased view on conservative talk radio, not the court.

GOP Lawmakers Seek To Repeal Century Old Practice

The Huffington Post | John Celock | Posted 02.20.2013 | Politics

A group of Republican state lawmakers in Georgia wants to end direct election of United States senators and return the power to state legislatures. ...

What Would Al Say? Putting the Federalist Back in Federal Contracting

David Isenberg | Posted 11.12.2012 | Business
David Isenberg

In a previous post I discussed an article dealing with how the country's founders felt about the use of mercenaries, certainly a precursor, if not dir...

Checks and Balances

Chris Weigant | Posted 08.20.2012 | Politics
Chris Weigant

Today's political commenters often misuse the concept of "checks and balances" to refer directly to politics. This is just flat-out wrong.

What Would the Founders Say About Common Core?

Alan Singer | Posted 08.01.2012 | Education
Alan Singer

I don't think Jim Stergios and I would agree on very much. But his recent blog questioning the common core standards and challenging the credibility of the people who are promoting it was brilliant and funny at the same time.

Laughable Online Censorship Attempt Won't Last a New York Minute

Chris Weigant | Posted 07.23.2012 | Politics
Chris Weigant

Republicans in the New York state government are attempting to pass a law that would ban anonymous comments online. Even if they actually passed the act, once it arrived in a federal court it would be tossed out in a "New York minute" (as they say).

Constitution Check: Would an Elected Supreme Court Get More Respect?

Lyle Denniston | Posted 06.10.2012 | Politics
Lyle Denniston

Among scholars who want the U.S. Supreme Court changed, most want term limits, not elections. The reason seems obvious, given the politics of the day.

Calling Wealthy Democrats

Brent Budowsky | Posted 04.10.2012 | Politics
Brent Budowsky

Citizens United destroys the American notion of citizenship by creating separate and unequal classes of Americans. It creates a de facto American House of Lords, in which all other Americans are relegated to second-class citizenship.

The American Spring

Ronald Ricker | Posted 01.28.2012 | Politics
Ronald Ricker

Somewhere, sometime, accelerating rapidly recently, we Americans have lost it--the American Dream. We were the land of opportunity, the land of equa...

Why America Needs a One-Term President

Donald Craig Mitchell | Posted 01.17.2012 | Politics
Donald Craig Mitchell

Is a six-year presidential term the solution to every problem that vexes the nation? Of course not. But is it a constitutional reform that merits serious public discussion? Absolutely.

The Constitution and the Tea Party Part Company

Bruce Fein | Posted 07.16.2011 | Politics
Bruce Fein

If Tea Party Caucus Members wish to keep their constitutional escutcheons unsullied, they should not tarry in taking legislative action against unconstitutional presidential wars and unconstitutional unaudited military spending.

The Danger of Democracy in the Middle East: Free Elections May Not Produce Freedom

Terry Newell | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Terry Newell

That we have spent more on arming Middle Eastern nations than on helping their people learn the art of republican government may well come back to haunt us in the months ahead.

Lessons in Pluralism

Mike Lux | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Mike Lux

Here is what is most important to remember about what the Republicans, extreme right, and Wall Street guys are trying to do: it goes against the entire political theory this country was founded on.

Restoring Democracy

Gary Hart | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Gary Hart

Rules of the Senate cannot trump the obvious intention of the Founding Fathers that legislation passed by majorities of both houses, except for the explicit exceptions for ratification of treaties, becomes the law of the land.

American Exceptionalism Is Un-American

Bruce Fein | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Bruce Fein

The boast of American exceptionalism betrays ignorance of the Founding Fathers and the tarnished history of the United States. In any event, to overlook faults because other nations are more flawed is juvenile, and leads nowhere.

What the Tea Party Is Really All About

Michael J.W. Stickings | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Michael J.W. Stickings

It is simply ridiculous to suggest that the Teabaggers are engaged in a "spirited defense of fundamental American principles." That's giving them too much credit.

Throw the Bums In!

Brian Ross | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Brian Ross

When the economy stinks, and CEOs are getting millions in bonuses for firing enough of you, and you can't toss GE's Jeffrey Immelt out on his ear, but...