The Federalist and Anti-Federalist Papers

I've still got these webpages open, so I might as well try this page-thingy out. Here's where you'll find links to the Federalist Papers and the Anti-Federalist Papers.

A short overview:

The Federalist Papers were a series of papers published in the late 1770s, following the American Revolutionary war, by men like Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison, under the pen name Publius, after the Roman orator, statesman, and console, Publius Valerius Publicola. The papers addressed the flaws in the then-existing government in the form of the Articles of Confederation. The federalists argued for a strong central government, to help keep the diverse country from splitting apart into numerous smaller confederacies, because it was rapidly becoming apparent (with Shay's Rebellion, and numerous other problems) that a confederacy as was detailed in the Articles could not sustain itself. If those names look familiar to you, it's because they (Hamilton, Jay, and Madison) are also the framers of the Constitution of the United States, especially Madison.

All 85 of the Federalist Papers can be found here: The Federalist Papers No. 1 - No. 8

Where the Federalist Papers promoted a strong central government, the Anti-Federalist Papers did the exact opposite. They questioned the need or the want for a strong centralized government, and suggested that the existing system could be improved upon in ways that didn't require the creation of a federal government. They were especially concerned about this strong, centralized, federal government encroaching upon their individual rights as citizens. The only known author of the Anti-Federalist Papers is Samuel Bryan; the other two wrote under pseudonyms: Cato and Brutus. There's some speculation on who they are, but nobody really knows for sure. The writings of Patrick Henry, the senator from Virgina who's famous speech triggered the American Revolutionary War (Give me liberty... or give me death!), are also sometimes included.

Information on the Anti-Federalist Papers, as well as the papers themselves, can be found here.

Both philosophies are strongly rooted in the Enlightenment era philosophy that reigned during this time: the fact that institutions of man could govern man without the will of God involved was unheard of to say the least, and both sides had strong bends towards this, with the Anti-Federalist Papers placing a greater emphasis on individual rights and liberties (the Federalist Papers assumed the government would follow those traditions of the Enlightenment without any kind of addendum).

If you blend the Anti-Federalist Papers and the Federalist Papers, you get a document that promotes a strong, centralized government while granting states rights and individual liberties. In short, you get the Constitution of the United States of America.