Plato – Statesman Theodorus wants the Eleatic Stranger to show how the Statesman, Philosopher & Sophist are all different. Socrates allows a young Socrates “to be the interlocutor”. They start off saying that the sciences should be divided into subcategories. The sciences are divided between action-based knowledge (handicrafts, etc.) &Continue Reading

“On Liberty” (1859), Chapter 5: Applications, by John Stuart Mill We’ve laid out the principles so we can discuss their applications in government & morals. This is to bring the meaning & limits of 2 doctrines into greater clarity 1 – The individual is not accountable to society if hisContinue Reading

“On Liberty” (1859), Chapter 4: Of the Limits to the Authority of Society over the Individuals, by John Stuart Mill What is the limit of sovereignty of an individual over himself? Where does the authority begin? Individuality should involve the arena of life where the individual is mostly concerned. SocietyContinue Reading

“On Liberty” (1859), Chapter 3: Of Individuality as one of the Elements of Well-Being, by John Stuart Mill Let’s examine if the same reasons don’t require that men should be free to act upon their opinions without hindrance from fellow man, so long as it’s at their own risk &Continue Reading

“On Liberty” (1859), Chapter 1: Introduction, by John Stuart Mill Civil or Social liberty – nature of limits of power legitimately exercised over the individual’s will Struggle between liberty & authority in the past was between subjects & the government. Liberty was meant as protection against tyranny from the government.Continue Reading

“The Farewell Address” by George Washington (1796) A new election for the President is coming up & you’ll who that new guy will be since I’ve taken myself out of the running I’m withdrawing from public life in spite of pleas for me not to I was going after theContinue Reading

Chapter 8: What Tempers the Tyranny of the Majority in the United States I – Absence of Administrative Centralization 2 types of centralization – government & administrative Only government centralization in the US If directing power had both, there’s be no freedom because it have the right to command, &Continue Reading

Chapter 7: The Omnipotence of the Majority in the United States and Its Effects Democratic government’s essence is absolute sovereignty of the will of the majority Legislature is chose to represent the majority directly for short terms – almost all government power is here Laws weaken the executive to theContinue Reading

Chapter 6: The Real Advantages Derived by American Society From Democratic Government I – The General Tendency of Laws Under the Sway of American Democracy and the Instincts of Those Who Apply Them defects of Democracy are obvious but the benefits are only seen in the long run laws canContinue Reading

Federalist No. 71 – Alexander Hamilton The President’s term should be four years. Some think that it’s too long and he could amass power. In this span, he has time to counteract temporary passions or influences of factions in the public and their representatives. His duty is to protect theContinue Reading

Federalist No. 70 – Alexander Hamilton A single executive is necessary for accountability, “executive energy” and defense against legislative encroachment on his power. One is enough to ensure secrecy, fewer fights and allowing decisions to be made quickly. Congress will have time to deliberate and listen to open discussion toContinue Reading

Federalist No. 69 – Alexander Hamilton The President won’t be an elected monarch. He can only negate acts, not pass them. He can have a veto overturned but a king can’t. Both the President and King serve as commander and chief. A King can raise and maintain an army butContinue Reading

Federalist No. 68 – Alexander Hamilton The Electoral College allows the sense of the people playing a role in selecting the President without mayhem and disorder. A direct election would bring us chaos and instability. Electors in the Electoral College would be unbiased since they don’t hold office. This ensuresContinue Reading

Federalist No. 51 – James Madison Explains how the structure of government has an effect on liberty. Each branch should be mostly independent – no branch should have too much power in selecting members of the other branches. Easy to make executive and legislative branches elected positions but it’s difficult forContinue Reading

Federalist No. 47 – James Madison Detractors say that the Constitution doesn’t divide the powers up enough so that they’re not wholly independent and that they are unevenly distributed. Important to focus on separation of powers. If too much power is given to one branch, it’s tyrannical but how muchContinue Reading

Federalist No. 31 – Alexander Hamilton The federal government needs to tax because it needs money to perform its functions Needs enough power to fulfill its responsibilities Can’t predict future problems of the government and shouldn’t be constrained Needs money to do those things and it needs to be ableContinue Reading

Federalist No. 15 – Alexander Hamilton The Confederation didn’t preserve peace and happiness. And will probably lead to anarchy, riots, large debts, territories near foreign powers, no military, no money, no commerce, no foreign respect and falling prospects. The Confederation needed a stronger central government but couldn’t do so withoutContinue Reading

Federalist No. 10 – James Madison The best argument for the Constitution is that it controls damage and chaos of factions – people have banded together to promote and protect special economic and political interests. These often work against the public’s interest. The Articles of Confederation and strong, independent mindedContinue Reading

Federalist No. 9 – Alexander Hamilton A strong union will act as a defense barrier against invasion and domestic problems. This will come from a system of checks and balances between the different branches of government. Compare the branches of government to planets orbiting the sun – in a singleContinue Reading