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Parliament imposed a variety of different acts on the American Colonies, ranging from taxes on glass products to forcing people to house soldiers. Naturally, the colonies rebelled and won their independence from England. The Americans, aside from winning their freedom, also ran into some big-time debt. In the decades leading up to the Revolutionary War, England was fighting wars in the New World that they didn’t have the money to cover the expenses of the war. To pay for the costs, Parliament imposed the Sugar, Currency, Stamp, Townshend, Tea, and Coercive (or Intolerable) Acts on the colonies. Those acts taxed, sugar and paper products, imports, tea, glass, paint, legal documents, and lead. The colonists were upset about all of these taxes because we didn’t have a say in what taxes were enacted upon us. The representatives of the colonies legislatures from a little over half of the British Colonies met up at New York’s City hall to figure out what they can do about these tyrannical actions. The other half of the colonies didn’t want to disobey the British constitution, so they did not meet up with the other delegates. The group came up with two documents stating their position on the taxes Parliament had opposed. The documents said something along the lines of, “You cannot tax us without our colony’s representatives approving of the taxes.” Parliament didn’t care about what the colonies wanted, so they passed the Declaratory Act. An act that said they could tax whoever and whatever, whenever they wanted. A year after Parliament passed the Declaratory Act, they passed the Townshend Acts. The Townshend Acts were indirect taxes. Glass, lead, paints, paper, tea, and other imports were taxed. It also took away colonial legislature and Parliament tightened their hold on the colonies even more. They started the Writs of Assistance, which were search warrants, so they could search for smuggled goods in boats, houses, business, and other properties. In response to the Townshend Acts, Samuel Adams said, “In all free states, the constitution is fixed; it is from then, that the legislature derives its authority; therefore, it cannot change the constitution without destroying its own foundation.” Samuel Adams meant that Britain can’t govern their territory from so far away. It’s the local government that knows what the people need and they are the ones who should provide. The colonists were angrier now that the taxes hadn’t been repealed yet, especially the Sons of Liberty. The Sons of Liberty was a group created by Samuel Adams and John Hancock. They were a rebellious group of male lawyers, merchants, and craftsmen who tarred and feather tax collectors to protest the Stamp Act. They would hold huge meetings for everyone to hear, to get everyone who listened in the mood to rebel against all the tax acts that Parliament was imposing, and when the Tea Act got passed was when they really kicked into high-gear with (sometimes violent) protest. The Sons of Liberty were also the ones responsible for the Boston Tea Party. They tried to be civil at first, going to the Massachusetts governor’s house and demanding that he send the ships back. When the governor refused, they boarded three ships dressed as Mohawk Indians on the night of December 16, 1773. On those ships was tea from the East India Tea Company, that was the only tea that the colonies could get, this was a British effort to save their valuable spot in India. The Sons of Liberty took a mere three hours to toss all the tea overboard. When it was all said and done, the damages amounted to about one million dollars. Parliament was stunned by these actions and soon enacted the Coercive Acts or the Intolerable Acts as the colonists referred to them as. This was the turning point in the road to American freedom. We soon won our independence from our mother country and had to, literally, start building our new country from the ground up. We agreed on George Washington to be our first president of the United States of America, and he appointed Alexander Hamilton as Secretary of the Treasury. Alexander While Hamilton thought that having some debt is good, he also saw that we were going to be in way too much debt, way too fast, especially for a new nation. To correct this, he proposed the Hamilton Financial Plan. His plan was a three-point plan; pay off war debts, mainly from France and the Netherlands; create a national bank to manage spending, borrowing, and repayment of borrowed money; and raise internal revenue by increasing taxes. Hamilton’s plan worked for a little bit and was a great plan, but our debt just went up from there. 77.1 million in 1791, 83 million in 1800, and 83.7 million in 1825.