In 1787, when a series debating argued about the approval of the proposal of the United States Constitution, James Madison and other federalist published several articles in the newspaper of New York to defend the proposed Constitution. In Madison’s writings, he explains the origin of faction, the harm of the factions, and the methods to protect the government from the violence of faction. His view of human nature is realistic and insightful. It also helps people to understand the reason of the structure of the United States political system. Madison believes factions which caused by unequal distribution of property is unsafe for a united country. Therefore, in order to decrease the effects of faction, he suggests the United States should be a large republic form of government that has lots checks and balances.
To explain the link between unequal distribution of property and factions, Madison first clarifies the origin of unequal distribution of property. He states people are born with different talents, attitudes, and physical/mental powers. These inherent qualities he called faculties are rewarded by society. According to Madison, “From the protection of different and unequal faculties of acquiring property, the possession degrees and kinds of property immediately results. (Page 64)” Society prizes some faculties and disregards other, based on people’s needs and culture norms. This fact makes people who were born with compelling aptness will be rewarded more property than others. When a society is liberal, it was not external force to balance the distribution differences. Plus the goal of a liberal government is to protect the individual’s rights and property. The government will stre...
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In conclusion, Madison considers the origin of faction is the unequal distribution of property, and the only way to control faction is to form a government with comprehended structure that each branch is protected and regulated by the constitution. He reflects the human nature is ambitious, and the fixed outcome of human ambitions is people create factions to promote their own interests. In the case of preventing government corrupted or mischief by factions, he believes majority and pure democracy is not a solution. The method he advocated is a large republic with checking system. He converts human ambition to provide internal checks and balances in government. His point of view stimulated the approval of the proposal of the United States Constitution, builds the federal system in America, and gives an insightful governmental structure model to other countries.
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