The three major cancers of government are mutability, the mischief of factions, and improper consolidation, and if we study the Federalist and the Anti-Federalist Papers we find that all of these diseases of government were major concerns. Oddly enough they are interrelated and easily curable, but the will to cure the government of these diseases is not apparent, because to cure the government of these diseases requires those that are infecting the government with these defects are the ones who will lose power with the cure.
There are many who bash the Articles of Confederation for being flawed without actually knowing what those flaws are, because it definitely isn’t flawed and definitely wasn’t considered flawed at the time, hence the preamble of the Constitution of the United States reference to a “More Perfect Government” which implies the current government as established by the Articles of Confederation was itself perfect. The problem most had with the government established by the Articles of Confederation was that it established a discrete democracy of the States as the Union which was a legislative assembly of the States as equals with equal suffrage to reach a predetermined majority consensus of all the States for assent to any measure.
Democracy is tough, it can’t be influenced, it can’t be controlled, it can’t be corrupted, and those with an agenda find it impossible to pursue that agenda in a democracy because it requires the concurrence of a majority of all the States. This is evidenced by the requirements for majority consensus of the States for the several decisions which the States assembled in congress would determine;
[Article 9 Clause 8 of the Articles of Confederation
The united states, in congress assembled, shall never engage in a war, nor grant letters of marque and reprisal in time of peace, nor enter into any treaties or alliances, nor coin money, nor regulate the value thereof nor ascertain the sums and expenses necessary for the defence and welfare of the united states, or any of them, nor emit bills, nor borrow money on the credit of the united states, nor appropriate money, nor agree upon the number of vessels of war to be built or purchased, or the number of land or sea forces to be raised, nor appoint a commander in chief of the army or navy, unless nine states assent to the same, nor shall a question on any other point, except for adjourning from day to day, be determined, unless by the votes of a majority of the united states in congress assembled.]
Something also missed is that 9 of 13 States was about 70% and it took 8 of 13 to form a simple majority, so there wasn’t much difference between the 2 requirements, today that is 26 States to form a simple majority and 34 States to form a 2/3 majority, and 38 States to form the 3/4 majority for ratification of amendments. The biggest shock that most will have is that the split between the Article 1 assembly of the States as a Confederated Republic and the Article 2 Confederate assembly of the States is defined by this clause of the Articles of Confederation where the Article 2 democratic assembly still makes all the collective decisions of a free and independent State; levying war, concluding peace, contracting alliances, establishing commerce, and any other Acts and Things an independent State may by right do, and it requires the concurrence of 2/3 of the States to assent to any decision of choice, the lesser maters, how the States interact with each other, are managed by the Article 1 Confederated Republican assembly through laws, and that only requires a simple majority for consensus.
Why am I spending so much time on the assembly of the States in congress? Because if this assembly of the States is improperly consolidated, then the assembly ceases to function, and leaves itself susceptible to the mischief of factions, mutability, and corruption, which is where we find ourselves today. So yes, we are in a constitutional crisis, which is a crisis of assembly and operation of congress as a legislative assembly, and if we don’t address these defects which infect our governing system, then the prognosis is terminal, our governing system will join the dung heap of history as the next failed governing system and society.