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The Clashing Interests Of The Founding Fathers

553 words - 2 pages

The Clashing Interests of The Founding Fathers

The framing of the American Constitution resulted in several conflicts dealing with economic issues, political concerns and dynamic conflicts of interest between the delegates. Each separate force had a perspective, usually clouded by personal motives, on how the new governmental system should operate. During the framing of the Constitution, the central conflicts were between the small states and the big states while in the ratification period the struggle involved the anti-federalists and the federalists. Each opposing force struggled for the power to have their personal interest and beliefs represented in the new governmental system. The different sectional interests were incorporated into the larger goal of creating the national government.

Power, in of itself, is not evil. When coupled with the self-interest and motives of man, power becomes evil and destroys all possibilities of liberty, law and right. Bernard Bailyn, author of The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution, correctly notes that what "gave transcendent importance to the aggressiveness of power was the fact that its natural prey, its necessary victim, was liberty, or law, or right" (Bailyn 57). The temptation of power corrupts man, which results in the inevitable destruction of liberty, law and right for power can not co-exist with the former.

A common thread during the late eighteen century dealt with the struggle for power in terms of national government versus state government, small state against big states, anti-federalists, federalists and so forth. While each opposing force struggled to have its own interest represented, the right of the people was of concern. The delegates wanted a land of liberty, law and right; however, they were struggling for power, which would inevitably cloud their vision to...

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