I have seen more and more reputable historians come around to the view that the constitution was used to replace the articles, not due to a lack of effectiveness of the articles, but due to a desire for further centralization of power from the nationalist perspective.
The most thorough treatment I have read on the subject arguing this point is by a man by the name of Kenneth W. Royce. I have not however seen any reviews of his book Hologram of Liberty from any credible libertarian scholars. I have heard scholars such as Sheldon Richman, whom I know quite a bit about, make similar arguments as Royce, for why the constitution was not what it seemed. Listening to you present your case, you seem to humor the same arguments that both Richman and Royce attempt to refute about the inadequacy of the Articles.
My question is three fold: 1. Is Kenneth Royce a reputable source for historical analysis(does his work stand up to peer review)? 2. Were the articles indeed plagued by inadequacies where the strength of the union was threated, both in terms of the ability to fight a defensive war and the ability to maintain free trade throughout the colonies? Or was it, as Richman has claimed that such inadequacies were only that from the perspective of those who wanted to implement a mercantilist national program? 3. If there were actual problems with the articles that threatened the integrity of the union, what were they?
The Confederation could not pay for an embassy to Spain, could not pay the interest on its loans, could not pay the soldiers what they had been promised, could not raise troops, etc. In short, it was next to worthless. This isn’t to say that amendment could not have worked, but surely the situation in 1787 was untenable.
I had never heard of those authors prior to reading your query, other than seeing one of their books’ titles mentioned. I’m sure there has been no peer review: who are their peers?
Do you know of any specific work that digs into the debt question, specifically in regards to speculation of government bonds, etc… I know that much work has been done on the issue of shays rebellion which lays the blame on Governor Bowden and other bank note speculators, and their ability to ensure that the Massachusetts government paid what were depreciated notes, at face value.
Is their a similar study done with US bonds and notes? Who held a majority and what their positions of influence were?