Note: This entire post is a paraphrase of Calhoun’s work. Direct quotes have been marked as such. Summary Man is a social being and. A Disquisition on Government. By John C. Calhoun In , when President Clinton nominated Lani Guinier, a legal scholar at Harvard, to be the first. A Disquisition on Government [John C. Calhoun, H. Lee Cheek Jr.] on Amazon. com. *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. This volume provides the most.

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If reversed—if their feelings and affections were stronger for others than for themselves, or even as strong, the necessary result would seem to be, that all individuality would be lost; and boundless and remediless disorder and confusion would ensue.

Charles de Secondat Montesquieu – – Lawbook Exchange. It may be readily inferred, from what has been stated, that the effect of organism is neither to supersede nor diminish the importance of the right of suffrage; but to aid and perfect it. As, then, the right of suffrage, without some other provision, cannot counteract this tendency of government, the next question for consideration is — What is that other provision?

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And, hence, they jkhn endeavor to defend and enlarge the restrictions, and to limit and contract the powers. And hence, there will be diffused throughout the whole community kind feelings between its different portions; and, instead of antipathy, a rivalry amongst them to promote the interests of each other, as far as this can be done consistently with the interest of all.

Such must be the end of the government of the numerical majority; and such, in brief, the process through which it must pass, in the regular course of events, before it can reach it. From the very beginning, their relationship was a troubled one. To man, he has assigned the social jon political state, dusquisition best adapted to develop the great capacities and faculties, intellectual and moral, with which he has endowed him; and has, accordingly, constituted him so as not only to impel him into the social state, but to make government necessary for his preservation and well-being.

The answer will be found in the fact not less incontestable than either of the others that, while man is created for the social state, and is accordingly so formed cqlhoun to feel what affects others, as well as what affects himself, he is, at goverment same time, so constituted as to feel more intensely what affects him directly, than what affects him indirectly though others; or, to express it differently, he is so constituted, governmentt his direct or individual affections are stronger than his sympathetic or social feelings.

I devote all the time left me, to finishing the work I commenced three years ago, or more That, by which this is prevented, by whatever name called, is what is meant by constitution, in its most comprehensive sense, when applied to government. Throughout the early years of his career, he consistently favored extensive federal assistance for internal improvements in an effort to encourage domestic commerce and farming.

It is not then wonderful, that a form of government, which periodically stakes all its honors and emoluments, as prizes to be contended for, should divide the community into two great hostile parties; or that party attachments, in the progress of the strife, should become so strong among the members of each respectively, as to absorb almost every feeling of our nature, both social and individual; or that their mutual antipathies should be carried to such an excess as to destroy, almost entirely, all sympathy between them, and to substitute in its place the strongest aversion.


John C. Calhoun: Disquisition on Government

But such is not the case. That, according to a principle of jurisprudence, universally admitted, courts of justice must look to the whole law, by which their decisions are to be guided and governed.

It is only when aided by a proper joyn, that it can collect the sense of the entire community—of each and all its interests; of each, through its appropriate organ, and of the whole, through all of them united. On the contrary, those of the numerical, instead of opposing and counteracting this tendency, add to it increased strength, in consequence of joun violent party struggles incident to them, as has been fully explained.

A disquisition on government

South Carolina and other Southern states, in the three decades preceding the Civil War, provided legislatures in which the vested interests of land and slaves dominated in the upper houses, while the popular will of the numerical majority prevailed in the lower houses. It is this mutual negative among its various conflicting interests, which invests each with the power of protecting itself.

He remained firm in his commitment to a national union of states and continued to worry that Southern states would become a minority in the Congress.

There must be parties to come into court who can be reached by its process and bound by its power; whose rights admit of ultimate decision by a tribunal, to which they are bound to submit.

Necessity will force it on all communities in some one form or another.

That it will be so used, unless prevented, is, from the constitution of man, just as certain as that it can be used. This principle, caljoun constitutional governments, is compromise — and in absolute governments, is force — as will be next explained.

In order to have a clear and just conception of the nature and object of government, it is indispensable to understand With them, profitable employments are diminished to the same extent, and population and wealth correspondingly decreased. Little more could be done, he heard Senator Mason say for him; compromise was no longer possible. The ultimate goal of these mechanisms were to disquisifion the authentic will of the white populace.

If reversed — if their feelings and affections were stronger for others than for themselves, or even as strong, the necessary result disquisitikn seem to be, that all individuality would be lost; and boundless and remediless disorder and confusion would ensue.

That they are united to a certain extent — and that equality of citizens, in the eyes of the law, is essential to liberty in a popular government, is conceded.

US Political Thought, Notes on Calhoun’s A Disquisition on Government

In reducing them to proper form, in applying them to practical uses, all elementary principles are liable to difficulties; but they are not, on this account, the less true, or valuable. Or, to express it more fully — How can those who are invested with the powers of government be prevented from employing them, as the means of aggrandizing themselves, instead of using them to protect and preserve society?

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So powerful, indeed, is this tendency, that it has led to almost incessant wars between contiguous communities for plunder and conquest, or to avenge injuries, real or supposed. If knowledge, wisdom, patriotism, and virtue, be the most certain means of acquiring them, they will be most highly appreciated and assiduously cultivated; and this would cause them to become prominent traits in the character of the people.

The former is as much the absolute government of the democratic, or popular form, as the latter of the monarchical or aristocratical. There is, again, but one mode in which this can be effected; and that is, by taking the sense of each interest or portion of the community, which may be unequally and injuriously affected by the action of the government, separately, through its own majority, or in some other way by which its voice may be fairly expressed; and to require the consent of each interest, either to put or to keep the government in action.

Just how fine, in other words, can we afford to slice this business of interest? The minority party, when it becomes the majority, then follows the precedent.

The primary bases of comparison were the Annals of Congress a report of the congressional proceedings of the 1st through 12th Congress compiled by Gales and Seaton from newspapers, magazines, and other sourcesthe Register of Debates a direct report of the congressional proceedings from to published by Gales and Seatonand The Congressional Globe a report of the 23rd through 42nd Congress published by Blair and Rives; F.

The divisions over the tariff and protectionism were intractable. Nor can it be done by limiting the powers of government, so as to make it too feeble to be made an instrument of abuse; for, passing by the difficulty of so limiting its powers, without creating a power higher than the government itself to enforce the observance of the limitations, it is a sufficient objection that it would, if practicable, defeat the end for which government is ordained, by making it too feeble to protect and preserve society.

He is candid, however, in recognizing and attempting to confront what he admits to be valid objections to the “doctrine” as well. Be it greater or smaller, a majority or minority, it must equally partake of an attribute inherent in each individual composing it; and, as in each the individual is stronger than the social feelings, the one would have the same tendency as the other to oppression and abuse of power.

Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. From this, another striking difference results.

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