"Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness"
The Americans had the advantage of evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of the British government and desiring equality among all Americans. The American documents that were drafted, were contracts that defined the powers of government, but drew their authority from the people, not from the royal seal from a distant king. All of these documents contained weak executive and judicial branches due to the distrust of previous ruling.
The Articles of Confederation or other wise known as the Articles of
Confusion, was eventually drawn up by thirteen states. This provided for a loose
confederation or "firm league of friendship" between the thirteen states and together
took joint action in dealing with common problems such as foreign affairs. There was
no executive branch and the judicial decisions were left exclusively to the states. Although the Articles of Confederation was weak it proved to be a land
marking government, and when compared to the European government Jefferson
commented he thought it was like comparing, "heaven and hell".
Although, the Articles of Confederation seemed like "heaven" to some it
proved to be too weak and ineffective to lead a nation. The main tragic flaw of the
Articles were that the national government could not resolve the people's problems.
The problems grew tremendously causing the nation to spiral downhill. The inability
to tax or regulate commerce among the states resulted in the nations failure in
repaying its huge debt caused by the Revolutionary War. Inflation rose and the
American dollar sunk down considerably to where it was only worth two cents, losing
98% of its value. The ability of allowing people power and limiting itself from
exercising too much power however did not overpower the weaknesses. Due to the
inability to manage the nation's problems and the...