Hamilton's Farewell Address Analysis

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In George Washington’s Farewell Address, he warned that independence, peace at home and abroad, safety, prosperity, and liberty were all dependent upon the unity between the states. He discouraged the nation from separating into factions, ““The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism.” Having Washington 's warning in mind, it’s ironic that his personally appointed Secretary of Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, and Secretary of State, Thomas Jefferson, formed the basis of political parties. Both helped guide the United States in interpreting the Constitution …show more content…
These ideas formed the Federalist Party, originating in the early 1790s. Hamilton 's views for America were ambitious and power-hungry, and from his fears and hopes, for his country, the Federalist Party was born. One fear of Hamilton 's was the people. He believed that the masses were “turbulent and changing.” (MP 163) In saying this, he is implying that he doesn’t trust the people and instead power should be entrusted to the wealthy elite, not only because they were more educated but above all because they were the ones most able to handle national debt. To explain, America had foreign debt as well as national debt to pay off. Hamilton’s play to pay off this debt was to establish credit by selling bonds from the Bank of the United States and collecting the money earned to pay back previous debt. By trusting the wealthy with the nation 's debt, Hamilton felt it would keep the government from collapsing because the wealthy would keep putting money into the bank as long as they weren’t losing any. To furthermore entrust America 's fate in the wealthy, Hamilton was a supporter of the Excise Whiskey Tax, the first tax imposed on domestic products, that directly targeted small farmers, who grew the grain that made whiskey. He supported this tax because he had a fear of the nonwealthy gaining too much power and believed this tax would prevent that. Another fear Hamilton had been …show more content…
Jefferson’s idea of an ideal society was revolved around the common man. (MP 165) He praised the “yeoman farmer” and trusted in their discretion about what America could become. “He felt that urbanization, industrial factories, and financial speculation would serve to rob the common man of his independence and economic freedom.” (MP165) Jefferson feared the opposite of what Hamilton did, he feared the national government gaining power. Jefferson identified more with state independence because he lived in the states while they were still separate, whereas Hamilton didn’t have any regard for local autonomy because he never lived in an individual state and had to fight for states rights. Jefferson feared a strong centralized power because he believed the more power to the common man, the better. Thomas Jefferson shares how much trust he had in the common man in his Notes on the State of Virginia, “Those who labor in the earth are the chosen people of God.” (MP 165) This quote clearly expresses the amount of trust Jefferson had in the people and furthermore, how idealistic he was about having a government for the people by the people. Jefferson also feared strong economy and industry, means he didn’t think leading America down a commercial path was the right answer. He believed commercialism would bring a love of

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