Below is the video and transcript to listen to the final comments of the Obama Presidency.
Federalist Paper #68, WayBACK Wednesday
The Mode of Electing the President
From the New York Packet.
Friday, March 14, 1788.
To the People of the State of New York:
THE mode of appointment of the Chief Magistrate of the United States is almost the only part of the system, of any consequence, which has escaped without severe censure, or which has received the slightest mark of approbation from its opponents. The most plausible of these, who has appeared in print, has even deigned to admit that the election of the President is pretty well guarded.1 I venture somewhat further, and hesitate not to affirm, that if the manner of it be not perfect, it is at least excellent. It unites in an eminent degree all the advantages, the union of which was to be wished for.
It was desirable that the sense of the people should operate in the choice of the person to whom so important a trust was to be confided. This end will be answered by committing the right of making it, not to any preestablished body, but to men chosen by the people for the special purpose, and at the particular conjuncture.
It was equally desirable, that the immediate election should be made by men most capable of analyzing the qualities adapted to the station, and acting under circumstances favorable to deliberation, and to a judicious combination of all the reasons and inducements which were proper to govern their choice. A small number of persons, selected by their fellow-citizens from the general mass, will be most likely to possess the information and discernment requisite to such complicated investigations.
It was also peculiarly desirable to afford as little opportunity as possible to tumult and disorder. This evil was not least to be dreaded in the election of a magistrate, who was to have so important an agency in the administration of the government as the President of the United States. But the precautions which have been so happily concerted in the system under consideration, promise an effectual security against this mischief. The choice of SEVERAL, to form an intermediate body of electors, will be much less apt to convulse the community with any extraordinary or violent movements, than the choice of ONE who was himself to be the final object of the public wishes. And as the electors, chosen in each State, are to assemble and vote in the State in which they are chosen, this detached and divided situation will expose them much less to heats and ferments, which might be communicated from them to the people, than if they were all to be convened at one time, in one place.
Nothing was more to be desired than that every practicable obstacle should be opposed to cabal, intrigue, and corruption. These most deadly adversaries of republican government might naturally have been expected to make their approaches from more than one querter, but chiefly from the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils. How could they better gratify this, than by raising a creature of their own to the chief magistracy of the Union? But the convention have guarded against all danger of this sort, with the most provident and judicious attention. They have not made the appointment of the President to depend on any preexisting bodies of men, who might be tampered with beforehand to prostitute their votes; but they have referred it in the first instance to an immediate act of the people of America, to be exerted in the choice of persons for the temporary and sole purpose of making the appointment. And they have excluded from eligibility to this trust, all those who from situation might be suspected of too great devotion to the President in office. No senator, representative, or other person holding a place of trust or profit under the United States, can be of the numbers of the electors. Thus without corrupting the body of the people, the immediate agents in the election will at least enter upon the task free from any sinister bias. Their transient existence, and their detached situation, already taken notice of, afford a satisfactory prospect of their continuing so, to the conclusion of it. The business of corruption, when it is to embrace so considerable a number of men, requires time as well as means. Nor would it be found easy suddenly to embark them, dispersed as they would be over thirteen States, in any combinations founded upon motives, which though they could not properly be denominated corrupt, might yet be of a nature to mislead them from their duty.
Another and no less important desideratum was, that the Executive should be independent for his continuance in office on all but the people themselves. He might otherwise be tempted to sacrifice his duty to his complaisance for those whose favor was necessary to the duration of his official consequence. This advantage will also be secured, by making his re-election to depend on a special body of representatives, deputed by the society for the single purpose of making the important choice.
All these advantages will happily combine in the plan devised by the convention; which is, that the people of each State shall choose a number of persons as electors, equal to the number of senators and representatives of such State in the national government, who shall assemble within the State, and vote for some fit person as President. Their votes, thus given, are to be transmitted to the seat of the national government, and the person who may happen to have a majority of the whole number of votes will be the President. But as a majority of the votes might not always happen to centre in one man, and as it might be unsafe to permit less than a majority to be conclusive, it is provided that, in such a contingency, the House of Representatives shall select out of the candidates who shall have the five highest number of votes, the man who in their opinion may be best qualified for the office.
The process of election affords a moral certainty, that the office of President will never fall to the lot of any man who is not in an eminent degree endowed with the requisite qualifications. Talents for low intrigue, and the little arts of popularity, may alone suffice to elevate a man to the first honors in a single State; but it will require other talents, and a different kind of merit, to establish him in the esteem and confidence of the whole Union, or of so considerable a portion of it as would be necessary to make him a successful candidate for the distinguished office of President of the United States. It will not be too strong to say, that there will be a constant probability of seeing the station filled by characters pre-eminent for ability and virtue. And this will be thought no inconsiderable recommendation of the Constitution, by those who are able to estimate the share which the executive in every government must necessarily have in its good or ill administration. Though we cannot acquiesce in the political heresy of the poet who says: "For forms of government let fools contest That which is best administered is best,'' yet we may safely pronounce, that the true test of a good government is its aptitude and tendency to produce a good administration.
The Vice-President is to be chosen in the same manner with the President; with this difference, that the Senate is to do, in respect to the former, what is to be done by the House of Representatives, in respect to the latter.
The appointment of an extraordinary person, as Vice-President, has been objected to as superfluous, if not mischievous. It has been alleged, that it would have been preferable to have authorized the Senate to elect out of their own body an officer answering that description. But two considerations seem to justify the ideas of the convention in this respect. One is, that to secure at all times the possibility of a definite resolution of the body, it is necessary that the President should have only a casting vote. And to take the senator of any State from his seat as senator, to place him in that of President of the Senate, would be to exchange, in regard to the State from which he came, a constant for a contingent vote. The other consideration is, that as the Vice-President may occasionally become a substitute for the President, in the supreme executive magistracy, all the reasons which recommend the mode of election prescribed for the one, apply with great if not with equal force to the manner of appointing the other. It is remarkable that in this, as in most other instances, the objection which is made would lie against the constitution of this State. We have a Lieutenant-Governor, chosen by the people at large, who presides in the Senate, and is the constitutional substitute for the Governor, in casualties similar to those which would authorize the Vice-President to exercise the authorities and discharge the duties of the President.
The Story we tell
We need to finish the episode 2 The story we tell. In episode two of Race: the power of an illusion it seems that many have stopped taking notes about the ideas we discussed. These are everyday ideas for a lifetime. We will finish this today or Tuesday. Also make sure you see the list that we are checking Tuesday and Wednesday this week. The list has been up since Tuesday of last week and since we started your notebook inside your agendas. Make sure you did write down the list when I requested you to do so. Happy holidays!
This latest election is still a teachable moment for all students of history. The electors will be going to all the State capitals to discuss the final voting on the 2016 Presidential election. The idea of "Republicans defending Russians" is remarkable and our "enemy since WWII", says Cokie Roberts on ABC news This Week 12-18-16. Most of the pundits believe nothing will be happening to change the election results, but it would be interesting historically if they use the electoral college for the reason it was set up by the founding fathers. It is like the last 100 years of American history are under attack because of the political parties degrading our elections. This is much like the partisan election of 1800. The 2016 Presidential election will probably now be the worst election ever in terms of partisan attacks from the Democrats and Republicans.
As we studied, in the 1800 election, it was Jeffersonian-Democrat-Republicans versus Federalists that attacked many political personalities in newspapers [Aurora]. Luckily in by 1803 Marbury vs. Madison released the jurisprudence and mind of Jurist John Marshall and saved our new Constitution from collapse. When Congress, through legislation, abolished the courts for 14 months Marshall knew he needed to protect the judical branch which is 1/3 of the government. Justice Marshall's genius saved the checks and balances that will possibly be used in the next four years.
There are so many conflicts of interest for the new Trump Presidency [Russia, Turkey, China, hacking, harassment allegations, Attorney General pick/KKK statements, EPA, Deustch Bank loans, Real Estate deals, financial investments, blind trust, dozens of settled cases in court from the 1970s, and etc.] Monday is a great challenge for our electors if they understand American history, because as history students what we want to look at is, are the courts to become a purely political branch or remain a constitutional branch that decides "what the law is"?
marbury v. madison wayback wednesday
Left to right: William Marbury, John Marshall, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison.
Can we [e]RACISM?
1) Please choose a scientist and write about what they were talkng about in the episodes we have watched or are watching. Please use your class network and get help from Mr.C to generate ideas on these very important topics. The last time we did this we looked at Havard Professor Hammond and her ideas on Race. Please write an 11 sentence paragraph if possible or a summary [Write path interactions list is an option]. As a reminder, you have had the handouts since the begining of the year. The quotes/questions are input and your opinion or writing will be the output. Notes or your discussions should be on the input side. 2) Then work on the comprehensions questions and choose a discussion question. 3) Please make a timeline too [For the timeline it does not if the matter input or output, but please annotate the timeline]. Lastly, as always ask for help when you are not understanding and follow the social contract with kindness.
More ideas for section 2 of Chapter 7:
JOURNAL ENTRY for Extra Credit.
September 17, 1804, Great Plains
While traveling across the Great Plains, Meriwether Lewis marveled at the richness of the land.
“The shortness…of grass gave the plain the appearance throughout its whole extent of beautiful bowling-green in fine order…this scenery, already rich, pleasing, and beautiful was still farther heightened by immense herds of Buffaloe, deer Elk and Antelopes which we saw in every direction feeding on the hills and plains. I do not think I exaggerate when I estimate the number of Buffalo which could be compre[hend]ed at one view to amount to 3000.”
—Meriwether Lewis, quoted in Original Journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, edited by Reuben Bold Theraite
Please use these interactive maps to explore where the Corps (pronounced "CORE") went. We will watch some of this in class. Take notes and make a list of 5 key learnings. Write about 5 things you thought were the most important or interesting during the discovery of the Pacific ocean path. Look at into the unknown below link.
http://www.lewisandclarkexhibit.org/4_0_0/page_4_2_0_0.html_ [Virtual Journey]
Sacagawea saved the expedition. Learn more.
Jefferson's First Inaugural
The Wayback was on page 230, inside the green box. I hope you and your groups were able to work on this with a little more ease. Below are more links for you to research. You might think of the ideas on unity and compare to the policies we will see. You can compare this to the textbook and see if there are any similarities or differences. This will help with page two of the wayback.
Remember this is the graphic you are to be working with for maybe the rest of your life as a voter. These areas that we went over on Tuesday are to help you understand so much of what you need to know to have a large grasp of life, and where you want to go. Do not hesitate to ask for help at anytime on these strands. This is part of the story we tell everyday. Become historians and be kind to all.
Who Owns History?
We will need to move on to the 3rd President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson. We will also study The Story We Tell. What is the story we tell as Americans? What does our textbook tell us? We will also talk about the idea of who owns history?[guide]
Class, consider and place in your notes these two different historians' ideas:
1. “History as a disciplined enquiry aims to sustain the widest possible definition of memory, and to make the process of recall as accurate as possible, so that our knowledge of the past is not confined to what is immediately relevant.”
[John Tosh. The Pursuit of History. Fifth Edition.]
2. "Who owns history? Everyone and no one–which is why the study of the past is a constantly evolving, never-ending journey of discovery".
[Eric Foner, Who owns history?xix]
The class has already begun to talk about the social construction of Race. As you know from the wayback, Dr. Hammond believes that we can unmake race because we created the idea about race as a society. Many of you have wanted to use the teaching tolerance guide on bias and stereotypes which will also help in our class discussions and campus culture. Your job will continue to understand what were are learning to be able to see many perspectives of our history course.
In Race: The Power Of An Illusion, we have learned how we are one family. Our genes, and history, totally bind us together over time and space forever. Only our understandings of these events can we make sure that certain history does not repeat itself. If we are to unmake racism [eracism] We need to learn history. Civilization depends on us all understanding how we all can change the world one person at a time, starting with ourselves. The anti-bullying campaign is a great conduit to use to link important connections to history, to SVJHS, and to student's scholarship/academics/learning.
Philosophie: Salon Center
Everyone of us is living history. We all have a story to tell and the ancestors that came before us that carved a way for us to become a new member of civilization. We also are learning that we are all related genetically and culturally in the family of humanity. All people’s past becomes part of all of us, and will always be completely intertwined with the entire world community.
From time to time we will have some ideas from words that give us wisdom about our world. Writers are some of the most insightful people that understand our modern and ancient world quite well. Feel free to read, think, comment on these ideas. It seems that some of the students would like to debate issues of government, economics, and history. This can be a forum for this idea. Also if you would like to do formal debates in class we need to prepare debate rule and procedures. This can be a start and then we can decide if we will proceed to bring the debates in class on topics we study. Please follow our classroom rules if you decided to write on the blog. Make sure that you ask questions, and be helpful, and mature in all your interactions. This can be a helpful way for you to share what you have learned and what you want to learn, or just share ideas. Also just submit an idea through an email, or web contact, and we can maybe add the idea. Send a picture with the suggestion for the classes. Thank you.
Photos above left to right: The Solon, by Raphael was a depiction of the place where ideas were discussed and debated. Greek democracy in the public sphere. Here is the philosopher Seneca talking to Nero-Claudius Cesar Drusus Germanicus [Roman Emperor 54-68 BCE]- about society,law, politics, ethics and morality. Anthem for the doomed!
Students can also decide to add a topic that can be approved and monitored by Mr.C. Please be responsible and follow the social contract. You can share ideas and questions on your now topics about our class. Friends can help each other study with their devices. Please only students, but fell free to share the forum communications with your family. This can be a source for all students.