“I am commonly opposed to those who modestly assume the rank of champions of liberty, and make a very patriotic noise about the people. It is the stale artifice which has duped the world a thousand times, and yet, though detected, it is still successful. I love liberty as well as anybody. I am proud of it, as the true title of our people to distinction above others; but…I would guard it by making the laws strong enough to protect it.”— Fisher Ames, letter to George Richard Minot, 1789. Fisher Ames, of Dedham in Massachusetts, was one of the most eloquent Federalists at the time of America’s birth. An ardent opponent of Jeffersonian democracy, Ames feared the worst for the new nation, predicting spiritual decay and social anarchy.
October 11, 2012 · 5:55 pm