New at Reason

Given the endless spending, war-waging, photo ops, and more, you could be forgiven for thinking that every day is Presidents Day. But as some of us take a holiday commemorating George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, Gene Healy asks whether we're asking too much from America's top executive.

Read all about it here.

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  • Eric Dondero||

    Breaking news...

    The Galveston Daily-Record is reporting that internal polling numbers are suggesting that Reason's favorite Presidential candidate Ron Paul may be behind in his race for reelection to Congress. The paper describes Paul's reelection effort as having "dimming hopes."

    Full story at: www.mainstreamlibertarian.com

  • ||

    Dondero, you're a child.

  • ||

    I can't decide if I want Ron Paul to win his Congressional seat to piss off Dondero, or if I want him to lose it so he will accept the LP nomination for president to piss off Dondero.

    Eric, which one will piss you off more?

    Be honest, so I know what to root for.

  • economist||

    Dondero,
    And this has something to do with the article...how? Then again, I can't really talk, since I used one thread to complain about a book I thought sucked. But Dondero is also a giant douche, which gives me the high ground.

  • ||

    Its pretty much a law of the universe that whatever candidate Dondero supports ends up losing.

  • javier||

    Today we celebrate the first president, whom libertarians admire and abraham lincoln who foundamentally changed the role of the executive branch and washington DC to expand their power and influence. I guess I can be half in celebration today.

    (OMG Is he one of those pro-slavery neo-confederates?)

  • ||

    Javier-

    You can think Jeff Davis and his cohorts for that, too.

  • ||

    For Civil War historians out there, can anyone tell me why Robert E. Lee is held in such high regard in the South? Isn't it his fault they lost?

    Anyone want to play a fun game? What would the current 50 states (country make-up, etc) and the rest of the world look like now, if the South had won? I'm only asking since no one seems to give a shit about the actual post that Dondero hijacked in record time.

  • ||

    For Civil War historians out there, can anyone tell me why Robert E. Lee is held in such high regard in the South?



    Douglass Southall Freeman, thats why.

    During the war Stonewall Jackson was actually held in higher regard.

  • ||

    Cesar, he wasn't even born until 20 years after the war was over? Was he that good a writer that he could unfluence so many people that should have known better?

  • Jumbie||

    Nick,

    Lewis Grizzard once asked a history professor if the SOuth would have been better off without Lee.

    The professor said, "Yes, Definitely.'

    "Why"

    "Because they'd have lost the war three years sooner."

  • ||

    Was he that good a writer that he could unfluence so many people that should have known better?



    Well, he took the "lost cause" mythos that already existed and popularized it to great effect. Including making stuff up out of whole cloth and repeating flattering urban legends about Robert E. Lee, but it worked nevertheless.

  • Jumbie||

    BTW, I'm not saying I agree with that, since I'm not American and was never that interested in your civil war, comparatively speaking. I just thought it was a funny story.

  • ||

    It probably helps, too, that Robert E. Lee is the most sympathetic Confederate figure. He wasn't a fanatic like Jackson, and surrendered honorably instead of fleeing like a coward as Jeff Davis did.

  • Civil War Guy||

    1865: War of Northern Aggression finally ends with decisive battle of Chattanooga.

    2009: American President Barack Obama meets with CSA President Larry the Cable Guy to discuss trade sanctions against Texas Prime Magistrate Ron Paul for refusing to give away oil. California Overlord Gary Coleman does not attend.

  • economist||

    1865: Northern War of Aggression ends
    1965: President *insert name* signs a law officially ending slavery in all states of the Confederacy.

  • ||

    1865: South wins the Civil War

    By 1914: Both American continents have been carved into colonies by the European Great Powers

  • Jumbie||

    Civil War Guy,

    Not bad. Reminds me a little of Phillip K Dick's Man in the High Castle where the Japanese and Germans ruled North America.

    However, you forgot to mention Ecotopia's participation in the conference? Did they send anyone?

  • Eric Dondero||

    You honestly believe that if Ron Paul were to lose his GOP Congressional primary that would make him a favorite for the Libertarian Party nomination for President?

    Are you kidding me? How does losing an election for Congress make one a favorite for the US Presidential election?

    That is hilarious!

  • Jumbie||

    1865: War of Northern Aggression ends

    2009: Eric 'Douche' Dondero still threadjacking at reason.com

    (some things never change)

  • economist||

    Eric,
    I heard that on another website you go by "Freedomlover". However, apart from freedom for government to do as it pleases, what "freedom" do you love.

  • ||

    Eric, we're talking about the LP, here. They would still take him, but he would have to agree. I don't think they would ever nominate him unless he willingly agreed to be their candidate. It would make them look way worse if they nominated someone who failed to retain his House seat and then still refused to accept their nomination. They might as well disband at that point.

  • ||

    Since it is now the generic Presidents Day, I'm celebrating the Millard Fillmore administration. The Great White Fleet. The compromise of 1850. Millard rocked, baby!

  • economist||

    Cesar,
    Actually, I think the north would survive and even prosper. I say this as someone of mainly southern descent(though actually born in Ohio). I probably should have inserted a race war somewhere in the middle of my hypothetical Confederate victory timeline.

  • ||

    Jumbie, I am an American and I'm not even that interested in the Civil War. I never understood why people celebrate our darkest hour with such fond reverence as if we'd all accomplished something spectacular.

    I really don't understand why Southerners celebrate it more than Northerners, considering the outcome.

  • ||

    I guess we love war so much that the greatest thing we could ever do is wage it against ourselves.

  • economist||

    Actually, think that we're due for another civil war in about 20 years, the way things are going. Either the people who want the government to redistribute more or those who want to keep their wealth will start it.

  • ||

    {and we now return you to the regularly scheduled thread, already in progress...}

    Not only do we expect too much of our President (thus increasing the pressure for popular election of office that had originally been conceived of as being selected by the States, to function as their circus ringmaster of sorts), but we expect too much of the entire federal government.

    What's with this pledging of the nation's "full faith and credit" every five minutes, anyway? The nation hasn't had my full faith in a long time. Or more properly, the nation as defined by the constitution and embodied by its people HAS ALWAYS and WILL ALWAYS have my full faith. But the hyenas that have hijacked the nation's government for the past several decades have earned neither my faith nor any credit from me.

    Not only do we need a humbler foreign policy, we need a humbler domestic policy (or should that be "humbler homeland policy"), too! The President who can make progress in granting THAT wish would single-handedly redeem President's Day as a holiday, imnsho.

  • Jumbie||

    You mean this civil war?

    http://www.reason.com/blog/show/125041.html

  • NP||

    While Our Greatest President (i.e., the 1st guy) deserves a lot of credit for refusing to serve for a 3rd term, he was also a man of his own time who, like any other great figures, could not escape the pitfalls of convention and tradition, including a clear belief in a social hierarchy. For one thing he initially favored as a presidential title "His High Mightiness, the President of the United States and Protector of Their Liberties," and he also often acked like a virtual king,

    referring to himself in the third person, accepting royal-style iconography, appearing in state in a highly ornamented coach attended by four servants in livery, establishing very formal levees and going on progresses that were akin to those of monarchs.



    (Quote from George III: America's Last King by Jeremy Black.)

    Again this is not to deny Washington's great wisdom and integrity in other areas, but to illustrate the danger and tomfoolery of hero worship.

  • Eric Dondero||

    Huh? So, Pro-Defense libertarians are not allowed to post here at Reason?

    Funny. Cause Bob Poole, Founder of Reason Magazine was one of the original members of the Libertarian Defense Caucus, as were early Reason Contributors Dana Rohrabacher and Dr. Jack Wheeler.

    Fast forward 30 years later, and some Leftists claiming to be "libertarians" try to purge Pro-Defense libertarians from Reason.

  • javier||

    I am actually really surprised there hasn't been a second revolution. i guess in some sense the south's attempt at succession was a revolution. I am really surprised no one took any shoots at roosevelt during the depression that would spark anything. There wasn't a single radical capitalist in the whole bunch??

  • PC||

    "Are you kidding me? How does losing an election for Congress make one a favorite for the US Presidential election?

    That is hilarious!"

    I actually agree with this. Of course the two guys you endorsed for President, on lost his only congressional election, and the other was going to lose.

  • ||

    The 1930s were so bad getting FDR was lucky. We really dodged a bullet when Huey Long died.

  • economist||

    javier,
    Crap, I forgot all about Roosevelt, the father of the imperial presidency! I would say, however, that Lincoln was still its reluctant grandfather.

  • economist||

    Dondero: explain how Guiliani, McCain, or Huckabee are libertarian. And don't call me a leftist. I support wars that we have to fight to protect ourselves, which is why I was a young Reaganite, and a somewhat older supporter of the war in Afghanistan, which I at the time thought to actually be a war to capture and kill bin Laden.

  • squarooticus||

    Donderoooooo, you don't advocate defense: you advocate preemptive aggression. That is explicitly anti-libertarian.

  • ||

    Eric, Pro-Defense is great. Pro-Offense is retarded.

  • lunchstealer||

    Dondero's got his own blog. But he doesn't feel like he gets enough attention, so he spams here. What a fucking douche.

  • Eric Dondero||

    Umm, Nick, we were attacked first. Did you forget 9/11, USS Cole, Kobar Towers, Kenya/Tanzania bombings, First World Trade Center bombing, and as many of us believe - Oklahoma City.

    Oh, and the plot to assasinate George W. Bush on his visit to Kuwait, and the shots fired at our F-14s over the No-Fly Zones.

    And the USS Starke in 1987.

  • ||

    # Eric Dondero | February 18, 2008, 1:44pm | #
    # Huh? So, Pro-Defense libertarians are not
    # allowed to post here at Reason?

    One can be pro-defense and thoroughly against aggressive warfare, whether in the name of acquiring territory, taking out long-term "potential threats," or "securing and maintaining liberty" for other societies in foreign lands.

    Ron Paul, for example, seems very much "pro-defense." But he asserts that one of the most important components of our STRONGEST defense is the humbler foreign policy that GW Bush promised but never delivered.

    True liberty seems incompatible with militarily-backed mercantilist empire. Many would also argue that general prosperity and security are likewise incompatible: that the appearances of liberty and security they purchase are flimsy facades. But mercantilist empire seems to be what "pro-defense libertarians" advocate, nevertheless, showing themselves to be not very libertarian at all. Should such people post here? This libertarian won't use force to shut them out or drive them away. But unless the point is to thoroughly hijack the term "libertarian" and confuse those who don't already have a strong sense of that word -- in other words, the average joe in the street -- it is hard to see why weak- or non-libertarians post things that are antithetical to libertarianism here. Bear-baiting by trolls, I suppose -- that's always a popular activity in the online world.

  • Eric Dondero||

    Still waiting for an answer to my question as to how it is that Ron Paul losing his Congressional seat would be a "positive" for his run for the Presidency as a Libertarian?

    You know, by that logic, if McCain lost in 2008, he'd be a shoe-in for 2012: Tan, rested, ready, wiser and 4 years older.

  • Eric Dondero||

    What's the definition of "Pro-Defense" to an Anti-War Libertarian?

    Is it stationing the Army in Brownsville to protect against Al Qaeda in league with Mexican Drug Lords, lobbing scud missiles across the Rio Grande from Matamoros?

    Sorry, but I'd rather fight them over there, than on the banks of the Rio Grande.

  • economist||

    Dondero's new nickname here is "Cartman".

  • ||

    Still waiting for an answer to my question as to how it is that Ron Paul losing his Congressional seat would be a "positive" for his run for the Presidency as a Libertarian?

    Well, for one, it frees up his schedule.

    Didn't Lincoln lose to Douglas in the 1858 Senate race, only to be elected President in 1860?

  • economist||

    Sixstring,
    While I support Ron Paul, I doubt he would have Lincolnesque resurgence in two years. Lincoln only barely lost, whereas Ron Paul does well to pick up 10% of the vote.

  • ||

    # economist | February 18, 2008, 1:59pm | #

    # ... I support wars that we have to fight
    # to protect ourselves, which is why I was a
    # young Reaganite, and a somewhat older
    # supporter of the war in Afghanistan,
    # which I at the time thought to actually be
    # a war to capture and kill bin Laden.

    I thought we had an absolute right to go after bin Laden, though I thought war with Afghanistan, not to mention regime change there and subsequent occupation of that country, were wrongheaded policies that would, in the end, only cause more problems than they solved. I said so at the time. I favored a leaner, stealthier approach, akin to an international law-enforcement operation. But Iraq was another matter entirely. Dondero waves all of these bloody shirts, while conveniently neglecting to mention that most of the incidents cited were not just blowback from previous US interventions, but PREDICTABLE blowback. We are surely entitled to get satisfaction for the deaths and destruction caused by the blowback and its perpetrators. But if we don't recognize the nature of blowback and our responsibility to adopt more thoughtful foreign policy approaches that address our interests without inviting blowback, we doom ourselves to an endless cycle of retribution and counter-retribution, as the history of the middle-east region clearly demonstrates. That is just stupid, and any public figures who advocate a policies with such obvious consequences need to be declared stupid, everywhere and as often as possible, imho.

  • ||

    Reasonoids -
    I see by some of the responses that Dondero is posting today. Since I've altered by neural pathways* so I no longer can detect his posts, did he pen any novel, interesting or intelligent thoughts?

    Thanks in advance for wading through all of the sewage that is Dondero for me.

    * I actually do NOT read his posts.

  • ||

    Sixstring,
    While I support Ron Paul, I doubt he would have Lincolnesque resurgence in two years. Lincoln only barely lost, whereas Ron Paul does well to pick up 10% of the vote.


    True. I was just making the point that losing can be net positive. Mostly, I am learning to just ignore Dondero. My bad.

  • economist||

    Sixstring,
    That's actually what I figured, but I figured it was better I give a friendly criticism rather than let Cartman twist it to support his douchebag arguments.

  • ||

    # Eric Dondero | February 18, 2008, 2:17pm | #

    # What's the definition of "Pro-Defense"
    # to an Anti-War Libertarian?

    I'm not sure I am able to answer that question, not being an "anti-war Libertarian." Wars we have to fight to defend ourselves from attack or in response to attacks are certainly legitimate, and if we need to take the war "over there" to establish a buffer zone of safety for ourselves, so be it. But that's not the situation with the present war (or at least, it certainly didn't start out to be), and those who paint it as such are either honestly fooling themselves or dishonestly trying to fool others.

    Proper defense entails having a sufficient military to prevent or respond to attacks on our soil or territories, but not establishing permanent bases and military presence around the world. Proper defense means making foreign policy choices that keep us interacting with and trading with the rest of the world, but not dictating how other countries will conduct their affairs, toppling established governments and installing "compliant" regimes, spilling American blood and spending American treasure to defend and prop-up monarchies, tyannies, and ways of life that are antithetical to the American vision, and so forth. We've done a LOT of that in the past century or so, and then we whine when the chickens inevitably come home to roost: "Waahhh! Why us? We're the good guys, just minding our own business! Why they gotta hate?"

    They "gotta hate" because, whether or not with the best of intentions, we keep being where they are -- in their own backyards all too often -- and in their faces. You wouldn't like that if someone else was doing it to you. I wouldn't like that if it was happening to me. Why do we (collectively, as a nation) expect other peoples to "like it" or else? Until you and other "pro-defense Libertarians" can honestly grapple with that question and provide honest reasonable answers, you'll convince only the gullible. I observe, however, that there seem to be plenty such people around.

  • ||

    Eric, I'm still waiting for you to answer which sucks for you more, Ron Paul winning his Congressional seat or Ron Paul being the LP presidential candidate? I ask because while I think he'd rather be a victorious Congressman than a failed LP presidential candidate, I don't know which is worse for YOU. You have stated you are likely to vote LP because of the "strong" candidates you mentioned being their likely nominee. If Ron Paul wins the LP nomination, would your head explode because now ALL of your presidential hopefuls would have failed? That is why I ask. I want to know what to root for so your head will explode.

    And Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, we shouldn't be responsible for their regime change, we shouldn't be responsible for bringing liberty and democracy to the Iraqi people unless we decide to do that for every country on Earth, and we shouldn't attack them for their oil.

    I'm trying to remember the other false reasons we were given for attacking Iraq. They weren't responsible for Khobar Towers or USS Cole and the Stark was never given as a reason for the current Iraq War. You seem to be blaming Iraq for a lot of things they didn't do. Or are you just saying all Arabs or Muslims are the same and we should bomb 'em all? If you are saying that, you're a bigger piece of shit than I thought.

  • ||

    "But as some of us take a holiday commemorating George Washington..."

    George is spinning so fast in his grave, I'm surprised that we haven't figured out a way to harness the energy.

  • ||

    Or are you just saying all Arabs or Muslims are the same and we should bomb 'em all?



    I believe thats what he says. Quite often, in fact.

  • Brandybuck||

    Eric,

    Ron Paul is having a hard time with his congressional election because he has been specially targeted by the neocon electoral machine. Even a local talkshow host here in California (David Gold) was encouraging people to send money to Peden. Of course, this isn't new for Ron Paul, as you yourself should know.

    As for pro-defense, there is nothing wrong with it. But defense is not offense. I myself do support pro-active defense. If a threat is imminent, then strike first. But that was not the case in Iraq. Bush tried to make us believe it, but even if Saddam had those WMDs, he had no delivery mechanism to attack us with them. They might have hit Israel, to be sure, but Israel is a big boy and can defend itself.

    The reason people like you are disrespected by traditional libertarians, is because you REFUSE to allow any dissent on the issue. You deny free will and demand unthinking loyalty to the state. We have respect for Randy Barnett, because he is an intelligent man with whom we can have an intelligent conversation on the matter, even if we disagree. But you have done nothing but post puerile comments here and elsewhere. We treat you like a stupid child because you act like a stupid child.

  • ||

    Did you forget 9/11, USS Cole, Kobar Towers, Kenya/Tanzania bombings, First World Trade Center bombing, and as many of us believe - Oklahoma City.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find anyone here who didn't support going into Afghanistan, Dondero, you infant.
    Calling people who honestly can't see a reason to have attacked Iraq "leftists" is nothing but neo-con douchebaggery. But we don't expect much from that sack of yard litter you call a brain.

  • !||

    No, Jsub. It's just his usual Narcissistic thread-jacking, whipping his skippy to the Bush Doctrine, shilling his blog(s), and praying to the Lord of War that Ron gets routed by the neocon fear merchant in TX-14.

  • Mike Laursen||

    What would the current 50 states (country make-up, etc) and the rest of the world look like now, if the South had won?

    I don't know, but there probably wouldn't have been any Dukes of Hazzard.

  • economist||

    !
    "whipping his skippy". That's an interesting euphemism for jacking off (yes, I see the irony here.)

  • economist||

    Mike Laursen,
    I don't think US involvement WWI would have occurred (despite Wilson being a "progressive", southern states are always itching for a good fight). I don't know if that precludes WWII or not. I think legal segregation would be the rule in the South, as slavery would have ended more recently (possibly as late as 1900) and there would be no SCOTUS decision declaring it unconstitutional. I say this in all seriousness.

  • ||

    Going into Afgahnistan was completely justified, though I don't like the nation-building aspects of it. I say get them, kill them, leave.

  • ||

    Heres what would have happened I think had the South won the Civil War:

    For one, advocates of liberal (in the 19th Century sense) societies in Europe would have been dealt a serious blow.

    The Monroe Doctirne would be a dead letter, and Europeans would carve up Central and South America.

    North America would either be divided into two armed, hostile camps cynically manipulated by the European powers or carved into colonies outright.

    Slavery wouldn't end until 1900 or so, and the Confederacy would be (at best) the South Africa of the West after that.

  • ||

    400 Billion dollars a year prior to 9-11 in defense budget couldn't do what a 400 dollar pistol in the cockpit could have. Well that is if the airlines had been allowed to protect their private property. I guess the pro-defense libertarians should go back in time and not only review the Constitution. They should look at what General Marshall and Eisenhower fought after WW2 ended.(Hint its in a very famous Eisenhower Speech.)

  • ||

    Cesar,

    I think if the North would have never pushed through the Morrill Tarrif, the war between the states would have never happened.

  • ||

    John Q., google "Secession commissioner speeches". If you can find one paragraph about Tariffs in them, I'll eat my hat.

    You'll find plenty about slavery and "racial mixing" though.

  • Mike Laursen||

    I say this in all seriousness.

    And I made my comment about the Dukes of Hazzard in all not seriousness.

  • economist||

    John Q,
    I get the impression that you are of the revisionist camp that argues that the South fought over states' rights and tariffs, not slavery. While I respect most of your other opinions, I must strongly disagree with this one. That the debates in the southern legislatures over secession tended to center on whether the Republicans actually intended to abolish slavery puts the lie to the idea that the war was over tariffs.

  • ||

    The Federal Government was receiving most of its income through tariffs. The south was exporting 3/4 of its agriculture. It was protectionist mercantilism, infant industry policies. 3 congressmen and 2 senators from the south voted for the 1824 tariff. Northern states voted overwhelming in favor. Henry Clay led the way to raise it again by 50% in 1828, "The Tariff of Abominations." South Carolina,in a petition stated it was "A system of robbery and plunder. So that corrupt politicians could buy partisans and power." VA,NC, AL joined SC in opposing the tariff. MA, Oh, RH,IN NY issued resolutions in favor of the tariff. Essentially the south was paying more on the tax and it was hurting the economies of their trading partners which in turned hurt their income a second way.Meanwhile the manufacturing economy of the north was profiting.1832 SC issued an Ordinance of Notification. Perfectly legal prior to 1865 I might add. (OH Nullified the Bank of the United States) SC Nullification Ordinance:Authorized seizure of property from tariff collectors to importers, duties repaid w/ interest. Tax collectors were thrown in jail. No jail could be used to inprison anyone for failing to pay the tax. State allocated 200,000.00 for firearms incase they were needed to combat the tax collectors.The tariff was eventually lowered from themid 1830s at its lowest until 1857.


    Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis highlighted the Tariff Issue in both their inaugural addresses. By 1860 the voting population of the North was 3 times the size of the voting population of the South. The Republican Party made political gains in 1857-1858 by pushing for protectionist legislation. The Morrill Tariff in the 1859-60 house of representatives.1 southern representative voted for it, out of 105 from TN. Lincoln,a lifelong Mercantilist and Henry Clay Fan,campaigned on Protectionism for the Republican Nomination.("Battle Ground" State of PA,heart of steel industry, campaigned on protectionism.)Giant billboards and campaign posters for Lincoln/Hamlin read "Protection for Home Industry."

    Lincoln prior to inaguaration in 1861 stated in Pittsburg Penn that nothing was more important to Congressional Representatives than the Morrill Tariff which hadn't become law yet. Lincoln stated: "Anything that can be grown or Manufactured here in the United States should have zero competition from abroad." Lincoln statements over and over in the inaugural address make it clear he has no qualms with slavery. That to interfere with slavery would be unconstitutional. He supported a constitutional amendment to prohibit the federal government from interfere with slavery by using Seward to get it through the committee of 13 in the senate. He also got through that would have nullified the Northern States Nullification on the slave fugitive law. This was all within the couple weeks of his administration. He was accommodating 100%, even to the constitutional level. However on the Tariff Lincoln said, "In doing this there needs to be no bloodshed or violence, and there shall be none unless it be forced upon the national authority. The power confided to me will be used to hold, occupy, and possess the property and places belonging to the Government and to collect the duties and imposts; but beyond what may be necessary for these objects, there will be no invasion, no using of force against or among the people anywhere."(He's talking about the Morrill Tariff which had just passed which doubled the tariff in 1860.)

  • ||

    All the South had to do to prevent the Civil War was accept that slavery was a temporary institution that would end at some point in the future. If they had put their energies towards coming up with a compensated emancipation scheme instead of secession, the history of this country would be a good deal happier.

  • ||

    So much for the Alexander Hamilton's Federalist Papers #28, "The state governments will, in all possible contingencies, afford complete security against invasions of the liberty by the national authority."


    I personally would like to defer to honest Abe on this one. "Any people anywhere, being inclined and having the power, have the right to rise up, and shake off the existing government, and form a new one that suits them better. This is the most valuable, a most sacred right- a right which we hope and believe is to liberate the world. Nor is the right confined to cases in which the whole people of an existing government, may choose to exercise it. Any portion of such people that can, may revolutionize, and make their own, of so much territory as they inhabit." Abraham Lincoln 1848. (aww I like to imagine this is before the insanity set in from the decades of Syphilis effecting his mind.)

    What about John Quincey Adams on the 50th Anniversary of the Constitution?
    "The indissoluble link of union between the people of the several states of this confederated nation is, after all, not in the right but in the heart. If the day should ever come, may heaven avert it, when the affections of the people of these States shall be alienated from each other; when the fraternal spirit shall give way to cold indifference, or collision of interests shall fester into hatred, the bands of political associations will not long hold together parties no longer attracted by the magnetism of conciliated interests and kindly sympathies; and far better will it be for the people of the disunited states to part in friendship from each other, than to be held by constraint."

    Ulysses S Grant, Union General: "If I thought this war was to abolish slavery, I would resign my commission and offer my sword to the other side." He was a slaveholder until after the 13th amendment was ratified.... after the war.

  • ||

    John Q., my offer still stands. Find one mention of tarrifs in these speeches. You know, the speeches that lay out the causes and reasons for secession. If tariffs were so darned important you think they would spend a lot of time talking about them, right?

  • ||

    If slavery had been the issue, the South would have graciously accepted the Constitutional Amendment barring the federal government from interfering in slavery like Lincoln had stated. Lincoln was a very generous Republican when it came to slavery. Nulifying the states nullification of the fugitive slave act. Again, read Lincoln's speech. He explicitly states the only cause for war was collecting the tarriff.The only thing he could not be seen as generous on.. was of course.. the tarriffs.

  • economist||

    I'm not saying Lincoln wasn't more interested in tariffs than abolition. I'm saying that since the main engine for secessionists was the fear that he was being dishnonest and actually was going to abolish slavery, you can't credibly argue that the Civil War was not about slavery.

  • ||

    http://sunsite.utk.edu/civil-war/reasons.html

    Your premise doesn't stand. Find me one way Lincoln wasn't accommodating on Slavery. Just one. You. States hit hard by the tarriff mention financial losses in their declarations of secession. Look up the Congressional Declaration of War... find me slavery there.

  • economist||

    Cesar,
    Actually, I think that compensated emancipation would have been a stain on our history, because it actually implies that abolition infringed on an actual property right

  • ||

    Really? Give me a secession declaration that mentions tarrifs. Maybe you can find a sentence (if you're lucky) but I can give you paragraphs and paragraphs about slavery.

    Find me one way Lincoln wasn't accommodating on Slavery.



    The Republican Party declared in its platform that slavery was an institution that should be "put on the road to extinction". Not immediate abolition, of course. But the fact that a party came to power declaring slavery to be TEMPORARY and not PERMANENT sent the South over the edge. You can read it in their Secession Declarations, in the speeches of the Secession commissioners, in their constitution which explicitly guarantees "property in Negro slaves".

    He also didn't agree with the Dred Scott decision, didn't want any new slave states, and so on. That was not "Accomidating" from the Southern fire-eater point of view.

  • ||

    Find one pro abolition speech during his Campaign? The White Man's Proviso is the only push to keep blacks out of as many states as possible. It was a whig platform, that's why they wanted to keep blacks out of as many states as possible.

  • economist||

    John Q.,
    Yes, there were references to tariffs. And there were many more references to the protecting the "property rights" of slaveholders.

  • ||

    I never said he was an abolitionist. He was not an abolitionist, and the Republican Party was not an abolitionist Party.

    It WAS a Party, though, that wanted to overturn the Dred Scott decision, that would ban slavery from the territories, that would not admit any new slave states to the Union, and that declared slavery was a temporary institution. Thats why the South couldn't abide by the election of a Republican government.

  • economist||

    John Q,
    Your argument over the White Man's Proviso ignores how it was perceived in the Southern States and therefore how it shows that the Civil War was, primarily, over slavery. In any case, if tariffs caused the war, there shuold have been a civil war in the 1880's, when tariffs were much higher.

  • ||

    Lincoln's own actions speak for themselves. He ran on protectionist tarriffs that almost caused secession prior. He was willing to accommodate on slavery on every level. He had gotten legislation through the Committee of 13. If that's not a guarantee I don't know what is, given their power at the time. Lincoln was a Henry Clay Whig, and just like Henry Clay, it was his economic policies that alienated The South. He threatened force to collect the tarriff, not to end slavery. I will let Abe Lincoln's speech speak for itself.

  • ||

    I'd like to know how the South could have "Rose again" in the 1880's.

  • ||

    If you must describe the causes of the Civil War using one word, "slavery" is a better word to use than "tariffs". That is to say, it's slightly less pathetically inadequate.

  • ||

    Did this come about because of slavery?

    SC Nullification Ordinance:Authorized seizure of property from tariff collectors to importers, duties repaid w/ interest. Tax collectors were thrown in jail. No jail could be used to inprison anyone for failing to pay the tax. State allocated 200,000.00 for firearms incase they were needed to combat the tax collectors.

    Here we have a case history of prior incidents before the event, and we have Lincoln threatening force if these tarriffs were not collected. We have states submitting dollar figures of their losses while they left the union. We have no mention of slavery in the declaration of war. What more can be said?

  • ||

    What civil war? The south was fighting for control the central government?

  • ||

    If you must describe the causes of the Civil War using one word, "slavery" is a better word to use than "tariffs".

    Now I do agree that there isn't just one cause, and that people from both sides were motivated by different issues just like today. If you look at the letters from the troops in both the Union and the Confederacy, you won't see slavery in there as the motivating issue...

  • economist||

    John Q,
    Are you Thomas Woods in disguise? If so, I would like to say that I found most of your book on American history, as well as your book on the contributions of the Catholic Church to western civilization, enjoyable and informative. I think we agree on the vast majority of relevant issues. While the South didn't fight for control of the central government, I don't think that it's a relevant issue here. I think that we could accomplish more by focusing on promoting individual liberties than by trying to airbrush the history of the Confederacy. Confederate apologetics are best left to people with Confederate flags on their cars.

  • economist||

    Hows about we drop the Civil War issue and focus instead on productive arguments by convincing our opponents that we're right. I think we should start by explaining, slowly, to Al Sharpton why white Americans living today don't owe black Americans squat for slavery.

  • ||

    Southerners were manipulated by their politicians every bit as much as Northerners were. You think it is easy to get some hard-scrabble farmer to send his sons off to fight and die because Granny's skillet from Manchester carries a 10 cent tariff? No, you tell them the white man was ordained by God to control the lazy, shiftless blacks (a view that the sainted Robert E. Lee held) and that those pasty-faced Northern shopclerks were all for setting those savages free to ravage their wives and daughters. Propaganda wasn't invented by the neo-cons.

  • ||

    Nope I'm not Thomas E Woods Jr. However I am a huge fan. Thomas DiLorenzo I'm not either.. However I've always wondered if he's the typical Italian when it comes to the Dinner Table...

    As for promoting civil liberties, that's always the goal. Here, however, it's a guilty pleasure... sticking it to the parrot like mantra of the Civil War... Besides, who else but another libertarian would tell me I'm wrong with more than just opinion and lay things out for me to reconsider?

    Have you heard Thomas Woods give a lecture before? Too Funny...

  • ||

    I think we should start by explaining, slowly, to Al Sharpton why white Americans living today don't owe black Americans squat for slavery.

    *CLICK-CLACK* Git thuh fuck offa muh property, Mr. Sharpton. (And variations thereof.)

  • economist||

    Actually, Warty, I was thinking of something a little bit different, though if Al Sharpton showed up at my house, I'd probably react that way.

  • ||

    I've always wondered how the payment of reparations works out?

  • ||

    Enh, I try to have a daily fantasy where I defend the ole homestead with guns. I recommend it to everyone.

  • ||

    ahh yes the 870 Remington Method...

  • economist||

    I don't think the payment of reparations is right for several reasons.
    1. They assume that the entire white race is guilty for something done by a few white people over a hundred and fifty years ago.
    2. They assume that whites today have something that "belongs" to blacks. However, given that cotton production increase after the Civil War (to the point where the price depression prompted populist whining)combined with the fact that most American wealth stems from industry, not agriculture, suggests that slavery has little, if anything, to do with the wealth white people in America enjoy.
    3. It ignores that for the last 40-odd years the welfare state policies have been mainly favorable to minorities, essentially amounting to a huge "reparation" payment already.
    4. Those who say they are necessary to overcome the effects of slavery and discrimination ignore all of the above, as well as the fact that lots of immigrants, who regularly start off dirt poor and face discrimination, don't stay that way, and have had a lot less in the way of welfare benefits.
    I'm not a racist, but after hearing Al Sharpton's latest call for slavery reparations, I had to point it out on this thread. There's no point in us picking nits over what the Civil War was or was not about when others, today, are bent on destroying our liberties in the name of reparation for ancestral crimes by a few.

  • economist||

    I pointed out that I like Professor Woods' books. Although I'm not a practicing Catholic, I nonetheless enjoyed his book on the Catholic Church, mostly because I used it to argue against someone who said that "most of the problems in the world can be traced back to the Catholic Church" to which I said, "bullshit". I think I followed it up with a cogent argument drawing heavily on Professor Woods' book, but I gave up when the woman I was arguing with opined that "If muslims had colonized the americas, we wouldn't have any wars today". I figured there really wasn't a point.

  • ||

    I had an ancestor blown apart at Opequon (or Third Winchester as the rebs call it). Al Sharpton can come thank me any time he likes, and I'd be happy to accept payment for my family's loss.

    (I also had ancestors fighting on the other side, but let's keep that from him.)

  • ||

    I've always wondered how you would get a dime anyways? You have to prove somebody's ancestors enslaved yours. You how would you enforce it? What would be the payment, would there be interest? How do you know your ancestor didn't get 40 acres and a mule? I just don't think it's feesible...

  • ||

    It's just a red herring used by the professionally aggrieved to keep themselves in business. I wouldn't worry about it too much.

  • ||

    If muslims had colonized the americas, we wouldn't have any wars today"

    That's beautiful ..

    If Arab Pirates weren't so rampant maybe Christopher Columbus wouldn't have set out to find another route to the Indies?

  • ||

    I had an ancestor blown apart at Opequon (or Third Winchester as the rebs call it). Al Sharpton can come thank me any time he likes, and I'd be happy to accept payment for my family's loss.

    lol He'll just tell you that you're even..

  • economist||

    Yeah, that's what she said. I mean the part about muslims colonizing the americas. Do you think I might have gone over the line by calling her a "stupid bitch" after she said it?

  • ||

    Yeah, that's what she said. I mean the part about muslims colonizing the americas. Do you think I might have gone over the line by calling her a "stupid bitch" after she said it?

    Dunno about the bitch part, but stupid was probably a bit of an understatement.

  • ||

    Yeah, because no Henry Clay Whigs were elected prior to 1860.

    Oh, wait.

  • ||

    If we could get back to the article for a second

    "who talk as if they're running for a job that's a combination of guardian angel, shaman, and Supreme Warlord of the Earth" I think McCain is running for Supreme Warlord, Hillary Clinton for guardian angel (all that protecting people from themselves), and Obama for shaman (healing nations wounds in some mysterious, magical and ineffective way)

  • Fluffy||

    Dondero,

    Paul as the libertarian nominee would not lead to Paul winning the Presidency, but it would be the final nail in any hopes McCain has.

    Obama is practically guaranteed to win at this point, but it would be running up the score if Paul ran third party.

    That's why any event that makes it even marginally more likely that Paul would run third party should be seen as a negative for Donderoites.

  • ||

    The "what would it look like if the South had won the Civil War" is the subject of at least 9 books by Harry Turtledove, starting with "How Few Remain" and currently up to "In at the Death", which takes the history through 1944. Neither his rump USA (sided with Germany in The Great War) nor his CSA (develops its own Final Solution to the racial issue) are places that look like someplace I want to live, but they are totally plausible sequences of events.

  • Kolohe||

    Nick-

    here is one take on not only the confederacy succeeding at seceding , but various other movements as well.

  • Kolohe||

    I'm celebrating the Millard Fillmore administration. The Great White Fleet.

    Huh?

  • Eric Dondero||

    Fluffy, I believe you are mistaking me for a McCain supporter. I'm completely ambivelant on McCain. He's old, grey and boring. He won't get my vote, unless he nominates Sarah Palin for VP, and even then I'll be pulling the lever for Palin and not McCain.

  • Eric Dondero||

    Where I stand:

    1. Rudy Giuliani
    2. Mitt Romney
    3. Fred Thompson
    4. Wayne Root

    If Root doesn't win the LP nomination I'll be abstaining from the Presidential race and supporting downticket GOP candidates here in Texas only.

  • Eric Dondero||

    Jamie Kelley says that we'd be hard-pressed to find any Libertarian that didn't support going into Afghanistan. Really??

    I debated one just the other day on Todd Andrew Barnette's lame and badly produced internet radio show "Liberty Cap Live." It was Barry Hess of Arizona.

    Towards the end of the show I asked Hess repeatedly if he supported America intervening in Afghanistan to overthrow the Taliban and defeat Al Qaeda. Each time he refused to give a simple "yes" or "no." Saying "he didn't know."

    Anti-War Libertarian means Pacifist, plane and simple. If you oppose the War on Al Qaeda, like Hess does, you're as good as supporting Al Qaeda.

  • Mad Max||

    "He won't get my vote, unless he nominates Sarah Palin for VP, and even then I'll be pulling the lever for Palin and not McCain."

    In a way, I admire Rittburger's willingness to brave the hostility of this forum in order to get his message out. On the other hand, he needs to go easy on lever-pulling metaphors - red flags to bulls.

  • ||

    But Palin is strongly pro life and you always said abortion was THE libertarian issue Dondero.

    Man you're a giant tool.

  • Mad Max||

    Now that Peden is emblazoning Dondero's endorsement on his campaign web site, I wonder if someone on this forum with access to the voters in Dr. Paul's district could publicize Dondero's scathing critiques of the good Doctor.

    Or perhaps Dondero could write a Peden campaign pamphlet. I humbly suggest something in the following language, based on Dondero's criticisms of Dr. Paul in this forum:

    "I'm Eric Dondero, Responsible Libertarian, and I say:

    "VOTE FOR PEDEN - the candidate of true liberty! Don't support Ron Paul! Look at Paul's record, and you will see that he does not support the values of the people in this District.

    "DID YOU KNOW - That Dr. Paul defends the so-called Christian origins of the American Republic, even going so far as to say that the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution are replete with Christian references? What a damnable lie! Everybody knows that we are a *secular* Republic, and that God (if He exists) should stay in the closet where He belongs, not mess with our precious Constitution!

    "DID YOU KNOW that Dr. Paul proposed a bill to protect the phrase 'under God' in the Pledge of Allegiance? That Dr. Paul actually wants to keep those horrible, divisive words in the Pledge? What about the poor atheists who might be offended? Why won't Dr. Paul please think of the atheists?

    "DID YOU KNOW that Dr. Paul wants to define human life as beginning at conception, and to prevent federal courts from enforcing the *Roe v. Wade* decision? That decision is a grounbreaking victory for women everywhere, and Dr. Paul wants to turn back the clock!

    "PLEASE REJECT RON PAUL AND HIS DIVISIVE, HATE-FILLED POLICIES! Vote for Peden, the pro-abortion, keep-God-in-the-closet candidate!"

  • Fluffy||

    Towards the end of the show I asked Hess repeatedly if he supported America intervening in Afghanistan to overthrow the Taliban and defeat Al Qaeda. Each time he refused to give a simple "yes" or "no." Saying "he didn't know."

    Our current policy in Afghanistan was not the only way of try to achieve those two policies.

    I think we certainly had the moral right to attempt to kill or seize bin Laden, and to destroy as much of his organization as possible. We also had the moral right to smash any government or quasi-government [we did not recognize the Taliban as the legimate government of Afghanistan at the time, so we have to include that quasi bit] that tried to stand in our way as we did so.

    That's not the same as entering into a medium or long term obligation to occupy Afghanistan, rationalize its system of governance, "rebuild" it, etc.

    Tell me, Dondero, is it pacifistic to endorse smashing Afghanistan as necessary or permissible, but to not endorse trying to govern it or rebuild it? Because I would have been willing to do that as many times as required. What we're doing now? Not so much.

  • ||

    That's not the same as entering into a medium or long term obligation to occupy Afghanistan, rationalize its system of governance, "rebuild" it, etc.

    No, but I don't know that having to go back every 10 or 12 years to smash it again would have been all that productive, really.

  • Brandybuck||

    Geez, are you guys missing the boat or what? The Civil War wasn't over slavery or tarrifs. it was over the North invading the South!

    Think about it. The Norht could have let the South could have seceded, and that would have been the end of it. Mere secession was insufficient cause for Lincoln to conduct the bloodiest and costliest war of our history. It was unsufficient cause for arresting dissenters, suspending habeus corpus, raising a draft, and destroying the monetary supply. While the South was hardly perfect, at least they had the excuse of having been attacked.

  • Custom Nike Dunk||

    thanks

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