Hamilton versus Jefferson

This was originally posted on RedVirginia:

When you hear most people trace back the two parties today to the founding fathers you get Thomas Jefferson was a Democrat and Alexander Hamilton was a Republican. This is completely wrong. Thomas Jefferson was worried about a strong central government and wanted states to have most of the rights. Alexander Hamilton was the complete opposite and supported tariffs.

Lets take a look, quote from Thomas Jefferson:

“A wise and frugal government, which shall leave men free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor and bread it has earned – this is the sum of good government.”

quote from Alexander Hamilton:

“Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of man will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice without constraint.”

Sure, Hamilton’s quote doesn’t seem less radical than Jefferson’s but that is because the left in America at that time was like a moderate Democrat. Our country was founded by people who were afraid of government. That fear is only held by a small few. Those who have gotten comfortable and dependent on the state. They could not imagine a world with little or no government. Many even call for an increase in the size of the government to help these people who have no “reason and justice.”

Thomas Jefferson was and is a Libertarian-Conservative while Hamilton was a Moderate-Democrat. This is just one of many misconceptions about history that a good Conservative should be aware of. The spectrum has changed and we are regulated every day. As I have mentioned before Conservatives and Libertarians have been push overs to the Great Society and New Deal ideals. This is where it should stop. We are seeing a slow in our countries growth and it is not to be blamed on capitalism. It is the fault of government regulation. Regulation in almost all shapes and forms will decrease growth.

Conservatives: Read up on Thomas Jefferson, there is a lot to learn from a man who was constantly worried about big government.

Liberals: Read up on Alexander Hamilton, who realized big government was a problem but was trying to run big government without the problems. Liberals today deny the effects of certain things like the minimum wage and other regulations. That is for another post at another time.

Sometimes you have to know where you come from to understand where you are going. The Republican Party is going the wrong way and if we could correctly identify where we came from then maybe we could steer back on track.



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