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JAMES MADISON A government like ours has so many safety valves, giving vent to overheated passions, that it carries

within itself a relief against the infirmities from which the best of human Institutions can not be exempt. Were every one to live within his income or even the savings of the prudent to exceed the devidicts of the extravagant, the balance in the foreign commerce of the nation, could not be against it. Altho it be generally true as above stated that the danger of oppression lies in the interested majorities of the people rather than in usurped acts of the Government, yet there may be occasions on which the evil may spring from the latter sources; and on such, a bill of rights will be a good ground for an appeal to the sense of the community. I own myself the friend to a very free system of commerce, and hold it as a truth, that commercial shackles are generally unjust, oppressive and impolitic it is also a truth, that if industry and labour are left to take their own course, they will generally be directed to those objects which are the most productive, and this in a more certain and direct manner than the wisdom of the most enlightened legislature could point out. .that we are to place unlimited confidence in them, and expect nothing but the most exalted integrity and sublime virtue. But I go on this great republican principle, that the people will have virtue and intelligence to select men of virtue and wisdom. We may define a a government which derives all its powers directly or indirectly from the great body of the people, and is administered by persons holding their offices during pleasure, for a limited period, or during good behavior. It is essential to such a government that it be derived from the great body of the society, not from on inconsiderable proportion, or a favoured class of it. As long as the reason of man continues fallible, and he is at liberty to exercise it, different opinions will be formed. It is a melancholy reflection that liberty should be equally exposed to danger whether the Government have too much or too little power. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty likes in this; you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself. Not merely to swell the catalogue of people. No, sir, tis to increase the wealth and strength of the community; and those who acquire the rights of citizenship, without adding to the strength or wealth of the community; are not the people we are in want of.

The use of words is to express ideas. Perspicuity therefore requires not only that the ideas should be distinctly formed, but that they should be expressed by words distinctly and exclusively appropriate to them. It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man who knows what the law is today can guess what it will be to-morrow. Perhaps it is a universal truth that the loss of liberty at home is to be charged to provisions against dangers, real or pretended, from abroad. Throughout all Europe, the armies kept up under the pretext of defending, have enslaved the people. Each generation should be made to bear the burden of its own wars, instead of carrying them on, at the expense of other generations. No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. The constitution supposes, what the History of all Governments demonstrates, that the Executive is the branch of poser most interested in war, & most prone to it. For if the opinion of the President, not the facts & proofs themselves are to sway the judgment of Congress, in declaring war, and it eh President in the recess of Congress create a foreign mission, appoint the minister, & negotiate a War Treaty, without the possibility of a check even from the Senate until the measures present alternatives overruling the freedom of its judgment; is evident that the people are cheated our of the best ingredients in their Government, the safeguards of peace which is the greatest of their blessings. The appointment to offices is, of all the functions of Republican and perhaps every other form of Government, the most difficult to guard against abuse. To secure the public good, and private rights, against the danger of.faction, and at the same time to preserve the spirit and form of popular government, is then the great object to which our inquiries are directed. All men having power ought to be distrusted to a certain degree. The accumulation of all power, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.

Government is instituted to protect property of every sort This being the end of government, that alone is a just government, which impartially secures to every man, whatever is his own. There is an evil which ought to be guarded against in the indefinite accumulation of property from the capacity of holding it in perpetuity by ecclesiastical corporations. The power of all corporations, ought to be limited in this respect. The growing wealth acquired by them never fails to be a source of abuses. Since the general civilization of mankind, I believe there are more instances of abridgment of the freedom of the people, by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpations.