Having experienced the undeniable inefficiency of the existing federal government, you are asked to study and consider adopting a new Constitution for the United States of America.
The importance of this deliberation can not be overstated. The very existence of our country hangs in the balance, as does the safety and welfare of its people, communities, and states. We are called to decide the fate of a nation that is, in many respects, the most interesting in the world.
It has been often said that the people of this country will decide the important question of whether societies can establish a good government by careful thought and choice. Or whether people are forever destined to be governed only by accident and force. If this is true, the answer depends on our response to the current crisis. And a wrong decision deserves to be considered a misfortune for all mankind.
Variety of Interests Influence Debate
 Conscientious patriots understand the weighty importance of deciding whether to adopt the new Constitution. Knowing their decision will affect all human societies raises their anxiety.
It would be wonderful if we based our decision only on the best interests of our society, unbiased by less noble interests unconnected with the public good. Although we may ardently wish this, it can't be seriously expected. The Constitution offered for consideration affects too many special interests and changes too many local institutions not to expect discussions on subjects other than its merits. Views, passions and prejudices unrelated to discovering the truth and meaning of the document are expected.
Opposition From Politicians
 Politicians will present some of the most formidable obstacles to the new Constitution. Some will resist any change that might diminish the power and benefits of their current State offices. The perverted ambition of others will see potential self-aggrandizement within a country in disarray. Or will flatter themselves into believing they can rise to a higher livel of power within an alliance of several States than within a union under one government.
 However, I don't plan to dwell on observations of this nature. It would be presumptuous for me to indiscriminately declare a person's opposition due to self-interest or ambitious views merely because their situation might subject them to suspicion. Candidly, we admit even politicians may be motivated by upright intentions. And, undoubtedly, much of the opposition will spring from blameless, if not valid, motivations. Preconceived jealousies and fears will lead arguments astray into honest errors in thinking.
Indeed, so many powerful reasons can create a false bias that there are often wise and good men arguing on both the wrong and right side of society's most important questions. This reality should furnish a lesson of moderation to anyone who thinks they are always right in any controversy.
A further reason for caution--we are not always sure that people who advocate the truth are influenced by purer principles than their antagonists. Ambition, avarice, personal animosity, party opposition, and many other motives no more laudable than these, operate as well on those who support, as those who oppose, the right side of a question.
Moderation is important. Nothing is more repugnant than the intolerant spirit that has, at all times, characterized political parties. In politics, as in religion, it's absurd to aim at making proselytes by fire and sword. Heresies in either can rarely be cured by persecution.
Constitution Called Thief of Liberty
 Despite these arguments, a torrent of angry and malignant passions will be let loose about this subject, as in all former cases of great national debate. To judge from the conduct of the opponents of the new Constitution, we will conclude that they hope to show evidence of the justness of their opinions and increase the number of their converts by the loudness of their rhetoric and the bitterness of their denunciations.
Those who argue with enlightened zeal for the energy and efficiency of government will be demonized as being fond of despotic power and hostile to liberty. When supporters profess that the rights of the people must be scrupulously protected, it will be characterized as insincere, a blatant bid for popularity at the expense of the public good.
It will be forgotten that dangers to the rights of people most commonly spring from the head rather than the heart, that the noble enthusiasm of liberty is apt to be infected with narrow-minded bigotry and distrust.
It will also be forgotten that a vital government is essential to secure liberty. Sound judgment shows these can never be separated. And dangerous ambition more often lurks behind the specious mask of zeal for the rights of the people than under the zeal for a firm and efficient government. History teaches us that of the men who have overturned the liberties of republics, most began their career by proclaiming their devotion to the people. They gain position by arousing people's prejudices and end as tyrants.
This is very good, but some of the original intent was lost in the translation to Modern Language.Published 3 days ago by Fred D. Clark
A book that I wanted to read for a long time and have enjoyed reading it. A lot of insight into the founding principles of our country that show how wrong a direction the present... Read morePublished 8 months ago by don bare
While I am not a legal expert, I read the federalist papers, and spent most of my time attempting to decipher the language of the past. This book simplified the process. Read morePublished 9 months ago by junebug
These are really a teaching for what the Constitution and Declaration of Independence is about. These take time to study and understand.Published 11 months ago by Richard K. Orr
The Federalist Papers In Modern Language: Indexed for Today's Political Issue is easer to read then the original writtings. The indexing helps when discussing political issues.Published 11 months ago by George M. Feder
The early style english is difficult to understand but his version is done very well and follows the original well. Should be required reading for Congress.Published 12 months ago by Thomas Fairbourn Jr.
Why do you require this? The grocery store does not bug me about why I liked the Del Monte green beans or why I chose the cut beans instead of the French cut or whole beans.Published 12 months ago by Bob Richie
Why didn't I pay closer attention when I was in school? This is the documentation of the debate made to adopt the Constitution instead of making the states independent countries. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Connie Slocum