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Analyze the degree to which the Articles provided an effective form of government with respect to any two of the following: Foreign Relations, Economic Conditions, or Western Lands
In 1777, the states enacted the Articles of Confederation to preserve democracy and prevent tyranny from those who sought to centralize power. But in their efforts to keep their independence, the states created a weak central government that was unable to improve an insolvent economy and poor foreign relations.
Although the confederation gained some substantial powers, the crucial powers to tax and regulate commerce remained with the individual states. Each state passed their own currency, and therefore created inflation and made…show more content…
stated “the Articles were to impotent to govern.” Lastly, no judicial system was provided for to enforce laws and therefore allowed for insurrections such as Shay’s Rebellion. In addition, to pass legislation required a unanimous consent and more than not a single dissenting vote prevented the ratification of strong economic bills. Overall, the Articles were ineffective in improving the economic state of the new nation.
Although Thomas Paine (Common Sense) believed that the Articles and decentralization was a logical choice of government after the strict rule of the British, the Articles inherently divided the interests of the thirteen colonies. Following the war for Independence, foreign relations with Britain and Spain was tense at best, but division of the states made relations worse. American delegates had to satisfy the needs of thirteen sovereign states, and therefore any resulting treaty was regarded by the minority as a failure. Such was the case in the Jay Gardoqui treaty in which John Jay created a deal for East Coast merchants but at the expense of the interests of the West and South. In addition, a lack of national unity allowed Britain and Spain to continue to subvert the new nation by increasing hostilities with the Indians. Unless a strong a central government was created, the confederation would not be taken seriously by European powers. The British believed that the new nation could not survive and therefore continued to have military
The Articles of Confederation Essay examples
1612 Words7 Pages
The Continental Congress between the years of 1776 and 1777 decided that the way of living was not suitable. After all had decided they drafted together, what we call The Articles of Confederation; “the document that defined the colonies’ collective sovereignty; drafted by the Continental Congress between 1776 and 1777, then ratified by the thirteen states in 1781”(Schultz 115). There was experimentation that was being done in the states that didn’t affect The Articles of Confederation. There wasn’t much change, as it was about the same from the late 1770s. The Articles provided each state their independence and granting very minimal power to the main federal government.
Under the Articles of Confederation, there were powers strictly…show more content…
There were two main achievements, “ (I) the Articles established the United States as a government of law that placed limited on governments authority, and (2) the Articles created a national citizenship, which gave equal rights to qualifying members. There would be no titles or codification of classes in America” (Schultz 116). However, there were three main weaknesses that stood out. First, the inability to raise funds because the new nation was badly in debt and taxes couldn’t be levied because of the Articles of Confederation. This then made it hard to find a creditor, which then made it an immediate disaster and leaded to trouble for the new nation. Second, the need for unanimity to make changes was one of the weaknesses under the Articles. In 1781, a nation bank was asked to help the national debt and facilitate credit. Because of this, a system of reserves was created by the capitol. This then put a 5 percent tax on all imported goods. Each state had to approve of these happenings under the Articles of Confederation, unfortunately Rhode Island didn’t agree on this taxation. This then forced the bill to die, and the plans were unable to be cleared. The last weakness of the Articles was the lack of authority over international trade. The commerce between states suffered because there was no centralized authority. Each state had its own form of currency and taxes it was hard to trade goods over their state