Articles of ConfederationAs the first written constitution of theUnited States, the Articles of Confederation created a legislature whereeach state was represented equally. The Congress had jurisdiction overforeign relations with the authority to form alliances and make treaties,make war and peace, sustain an army and navy, coin money, establish a postalservice, create admiralty courts, and settle disputes between states. Thus,the power vested in Congress allowed it to operate with moderate controlover the states. Another successful point was in the allowance ofequal votes in Congress for each state and the decree that most decisionsbe decided by majority vote.However, through these articles, the UnitedStates government lacked a sufficient system of taxation.
Under the Articlesof Confederation the Congress had no power to tax the states, instead itdepended on donations by the states. The states desired moderate governmentinvolvement and thus, were repulsed by the idea of federal taxation. Lackingin adequate funding, inflation soon overwhelmed the nation. Anotherobstacle in effective governing was that The Articles did not grant Congressthe power to enforce its laws, instead depending on voluntary complianceby the states. In place of executive and judicial branches, The Articlescreated an inefficient committee system branching out of Congress.
Most importantly, any amendment to the Articles of Confederation requiredthe ratification by all the states, a measure that virtually eliminatedany chance of change.The negatives of The Articles graduallymagnified. The British refused to evacuate from forts in the AmericanOld Northwest. Finally, Shay’s rebellion in Massachusetts symbolizedthe feebleness of the nation, and inadequacy of the Articles of Confederation.Although, some states opposed a radical change in governmental form , itwas inevitable by 1787.The Articles of Confederation providedeffective management of expansion for the United States. It also gave Congressample control over guidance of the country.
However, The Articles wereinsufficient in several important matters. Without an executive branchthe country lacked a clear, decisive leader. The Congress had nopower to lay and collect taxes, nor did it possess the power to enforceits laws, making it virtually dependent on the states. On matters of amendmentThe Articles left little room for change, relying on an unanimous decisionto alter it.
Despite, success in expansion policies, The Articles of Confederationwas a failure in creating a prosperous and efficacious country that couldsupport and defend itself and its people.