New York Ratifying Convention. Remarks
(Melancton Smith’s Version)1
[Poughkeepsie, New York, June 27, 1788]
It is natural to suspect such a power—of money—more than necessity of govt.
Have read govt.—wrong Ideas—his Ideas to give a safe and equal repr—no danger to entrust rulers in Republics.
Owes it origin to the present times.
This a Republic Govt—
One part to be chosen by ye. people for two years.
The next chosen for 6 years by peoples Repre.
The presid. chosen imediately by ye people for 4 years.
Entitled to approbation—even admiration—has all Checks—not confd. powers—two Branches—submd. to a chief magisor—a court admirably calculated—holding places during good behavr—why did gentn. come forward—Nobody ever said before, yt. a govt. shd. not be entrusted wh all power necessary.
To talk of despotism. as appld. to this govt. abd.—all govts. has the purse and ye sword.2
No Instance except the shadowy govt. of ancient Republics.
The maxim applies to the difft departments—the Legisl. ought not to have the purse & Sword.
It is high time we shd. reason right.
The saying, tht this govt. is unsafe—contrary to the opinions of all writers.
What is an adequate representation?
This State a mean—one to 4000.
The US: may be 16.0000—this wd. be a mob.
The rule in a small commy. will not apply to a large one.
If it goes to 200—will be sufft. to deliberate—secure agan Corrupt—cant made in 2 Years—no Idea 60 or 80—can combine.
no man who does not substitute fancy to reality.
This govt. all the requisites that any writer is reasoner.
The talk of danger to Liberty is verbage.
What power is necessary—a question what is convenient—
What ye objects of ye nat. gov—
As applied to revenue. Common defence implies a power of war offensive & defence.
The sources of expence—the maintainance of internal policy and defence.
what is ye propor. between them?
In great B.: where a monarch, a Court &c the proportion, is abt. 14 to 1.
Where ought to be lodged—is it most necessary in the natl. or State govts?
To the State govts. who have only ¹⁄₁₄—
the Body who have ye genl. govs.
No limits to the power, who cannot be limtd.
If we are to appropriate we must give the ¹⁄₁₅—
To a mind not predisposed, the agts sufficient.
In order to borrow—must have funds—must run in debt—sound policy. To contribute as much as they can—must run in Debt more than is necessary.
Melancton Smith MS Notes, from the original in the New York State Library, Albany.
2. In MS, “absurd.”