1. Madison says that “complaints are everywhere heard from our most considerate and virtuous citizens”—what are these complaints that people make.
a. “…that our governments are too unstable, that the public good is disregarded in the conflicts of rival parties, and that measures are too often decided, not according to the rules of justice and the rights of the minor party, but by the superior force of an interested and overbearing majority.”
2. Are these complaints valid in Madison’s view?
a. Yes, even though he wished that they were not true, he couldn’t deny the facts that showed all of these complaints to be true.
3. What is Madison’s definition of a faction?
a. Groups of citizens who are passionate about a cause even when it may be harmful to the community as a whole.
4. What are the “two methods of removing the causes of factions”? What does Madison think of these two approaches? Is he in favor of removing the causes?
a. “the one, by removing its causes; the other, by controlling its effects.” He thinks the first one is unwise and the second one is impractical. He is not in favor of removing the causes, because the cause is liberty. He does not wish to remove peoples’ liberty.
5. What is the “most common and durable source of factions” according to Madison?
a. “…The various and unequal distribution of property.”
6. Madison notes that factions are a serious problem in a republican form of government because a democracy is similar to a court. What is the problem with this court?
a. The most powerful factions might prevail.
7. Madison suggests that a republic is better than a democracy at controlling the effects of a majority faction (or a direct democracy in modern language). What are the “two great points of difference” that give republics an advantage over direct democracies?
a. “first, the delegation of the government, in the latter, to a small number of citizens elected by the rest; secondly, the greater number of citizens, and