In one paragraph give your opinion of why it was important for George Washington to put down the Whiskey Rebellion and enforce the tax on whiskey. In a second paragraph explain why the farmers thought the tax was unfair.
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In 1791 Hamilton convinced Congress to approve taxes on distilled spirits and carriages. Hamilton's principal reason for the tax was that he wanted to pay down the national debt, but he justified the tax "more as a measure of social discipline than as a source of revenue." But most importantly, Hamilton "wanted the tax imposed to advance and secure the power of the new federal government." As secretary of the treasury he had just assumed the states' debt for the war. Congress designed the tax so smaller distillers would pay by the gallon, while larger distillers (who could produce in volume) could take advantage of a flat fee. The net result was to affect smaller producers more than larger ones. George Washington, the president at the time, was one such large producer of whiskey. Large producers were assessed a tax of 6 cents per gallon, while small producers were taxed at 9 cents per gallon.