More on Libertarianism and the Civil War

For those of you interested in additional libertarian reflections on today’s 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War, I encourage you to check out the current issue of The Freeman, which includes very interesting essays on the Civil War and its legacy from economic historian Jeffrey Rogers Hummel, who calls the war “the simultaneous culmination and repudiation of the American Revolution,” Hillsdale College historian Burton Folsom, and Freeman Editor Sheldon Richman, among others. You can read it right here.

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  • MNG||

    Like I said in the morning links I'm usually tickled at how H&R Civil War links often bring out "extremists in the defense of liberty" to the defense of the slavery-based Confederacy.

    It's often interesting how many of them are paleos or borderline conservative shills.

  • Bingo||

    The argument isn't in defense of slavery, it's against what Lincoln did in order to preserve the Union.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Bingo,

    The argument isn't in defense of slavery, it's against what Lincoln did in order to preserve the Union.


    For people with a very and conveniently pliable set of ethics like MNG here, there's no difference between pointing out Lincoln's crimes and "defending slavery."

  • Bingo||

    It's impossible to discuss it because it's been hammered into kids heads for generations that Saint Lincoln went to war to end slavery and the only people that objected were racist, pro-slavery, unAmerican, and/or inbred hicks. So therefore if you question Saint Lincoln's motives or methods, you must fall into one or more of those categories.

    He's sort of like the anti-Hitler in that the slightest dissent marks you as dangerous and evil.

  • ||

    Yes, but Hitler admired saint Abe's ruthless application of total war.

  • ||

    I feel your pain, Bingo. My motives were as pure as the Master Race, but only truth-tellers like you will defend my motives and methods against those P.C. Communist kikes.

  • ||

    Indeed

  • ||

    So, which are you? a racist?, pro-slavery?, unAmerican?, and / or an inbred hick?

  • ||

    All four.

  • ||

    It is possible to point out Lincoln's errors without having to portray him as having no redeeming qualities whatsoever.

  • dennis||

    Lincoln might have had some redeeming features, but I don't think any of them were evident in his political career.

  • ||

    I would suggest you stop reading DiLorenzo and start reading real history books.

  • ||

    A million dead crackers.

    You can't argue with results like that.

  • ||

    Indeed.

  • Mike M.||

    The argument isn't in defense of slavery, it's against what Lincoln did in order to preserve the Union.

    Regardless of whatever Lincoln's true beliefs and intentions may or may not have been, I do think it is an interesting moral question as to how far one may go in order to combat extreme injustice.

    Slavery was quite clearly immoral, appalling, and it should never have been sanctioned by the government in the first place, especially one espousing the kinds of ideals the Founders were. And yet, it was.

    I believe once that was the case, a Civil War was inevitably going to happen sooner or later, and it was never going to be pretty.

  • prolefeed||

    There was nothing "inevitable" about the Civil War. A different president could have allowed secession.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: prolefeed,

    A different president could have allowed secession.


    A different president DID allow secession: James Buchanan, Jr., one of the few presidents that did NOT kill Americans for political reasons.

  • MNG||

    Let me get this straight, the libertarian thing to do when half of a part of a nation enslaves half of its population and then, when faced with the prospects for their slave based system to be curtailed by political changes decides to secede rather than face that, is to say "well, we won't stop you."

    Smell the LIBERTY!

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    Let me get this straight


    You didn't get it straight.

    the libertarian thing to do when half of a part of a nation enslaves half of its population and then, when faced with the prospects for their slave based system to be curtailed by political changes decides to secede rather than face that, is to say "well, we won't stop you."


    Tell me about the Statist fuck/utilitarian thing to do when you let four of the Union states keep their slaves while you go about killing or maiming more than 600,000 humans presumably to "free the slaves." After you get your head around that conundrum, then we can talk about letting states freely leave a union.

    By the way, this angelical Federal government did not go later to fight injustice around the world, despite the oh-so moral case for killing people to stop slavery: The US Gov certainly did NOT invade Brazil.

  • MNG||

    So the War was wrong because it was inconsistent by not freeing the slaves in Brazil?

    Oooookay!

  • MNG||

    Oh, and it was also wrong because in not letting the CSA take its slaves and go home the federals allowed four states to have slavery until, of course, the federals several years later got rid of it in the CSA and those four states. Looks like those four states got happily duped!

  • Joe R.||

    You are literally too dumb to grasp this, much as my goldfish is too dumb to grasp differential equations.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    So the War was wrong because it was inconsistent by not freeing the slaves in Brazil?


    No, the war was wrong regardless of the intention. Your argument that it was about freeing slaves makes NO sense, because, otherwise, the FedGov would show its consistency and keep freeing slaves. At least when it comes to THAT principle, Britain walked the walk and talked the talk, placing her army in tough posts (like the Sudan.) Not so the "Emancipator of Emancipators," the US Gov. Your explanation reeks of hypocrisy.

  • MNG||

    You mean any goverment that makes murder illegal but doesn't try to eliminate murder in Brazil is inconsistent?

    Hilarious!

  • Joe R.||

    So murdering half a million people to prevent it was the pro-liberty option?

  • ||

    Just curious here, but once a state ratifies the Constitution, they're locked in forever, even if it's against their will?

    How would you feel if the federal government raised taxes in just your state because the per capita income was much higher than elsewhere? Or what if they selectively decided to fund public works projects in other states and funded the programs through tax burdens placed on only the state you lived in?

    If your state decided to secede from the union based on your 4th Amendment rights being taken away, would you just throw up your arms and say, "gee whiz. This sucks, but we ratified the Constitution, so we're stuck."???

    If your answer is yes, then fuck you.

  • MNG||

    er, you have it backward. The Civil War was not about seceding because the federal government was oppresing the Southern states. It was about trying to keep the federal government from impinging on the State's systematic infringing of basic human rights for thousands of their citizens. The CSA tried to secede in order to protect is system of freely violating the basic, fundamental human rights of thousands of its citizens.

  • ||

    MNG, you are wrong.

    OM could have pointed out that prior to the War to Prevent Southern Independence, England, France, Spain, Portugal and Russia, along with several other regimes, all had ended slavery WITHOUT WAR.

  • MNG||

    Enslaving people is a fundamental violation of their rights. If some states felt that current political realities would lead to future impingements on their ability to, say, keep and bear arms and seceded to resist federal authority on that matter, would you defend that? That's essentially what the South did, and they did it over a much more fundamental right than the right to keep and bear arms.

  • ||

    MNG, are you conversant with the Fugitive Slave Act? How about specific cases in which former slaves were captured in northern states?

    Are you familiar with the judiciary's treatment of the fugitive slave act?Why don't you read about the Anthony Burns case and come back and educate us on what judge Edward Loring decided?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    The Civil War was not about seceding because the federal government was oppresing the Southern states.


    The war was not about "seceding," period.

    It was about trying to keep the federal government from impinging on the State's systematic infringing of basic human rights for thousands of their citizens.


    What? You're just like that idiot OhioOrrin, conflating the secession with the war, as if they were simultaneous!

    The CSA tried to secede in order to protect is system of freely violating the basic, fundamental human rights of thousands of its citizens.


    First, they didn't try, they seceded. That the Union invaded, killed, raped and destroyed to bring them back is another story. Second, the fact is that the black slaves were NOT citizens, nor was the Fed Gov interested in making them citizens, otherwise there would have been NO Fugitive Slave Act. The Constitutional Amendments that made the freed slaves citizens came LATER, after the smoke cleared and the fly-infested bodies were laid to rest.

    The war was NOT about freeing slaves, otherwise the FOUR (count them FOUR) slaver Union states would have been made to free theirs (which they did after the 13th Amendment was ratified, but not BEFORE that.) The war was about Federal power, no more, no less.

  • MNG||

    The South directly, explicitly said they were seceding because they feared under the political realities as they read them the federal government was going to start impinging on their system of enslaving a third of their population under federal authority. So they chose to secede to avoid that authority, because they feared it would be used to impinge on their slave system. The North attacked to exert that authority, to let the South know they could not just 'secede' to avoid federal authority.

  • MNG||

    "The war was about Federal power, no more, no less."

    You're more right than you think. What the South was worried about was that federal power would be used to impinge on their state supported institutions of enslaving their neighbors. They chose to secede to avoid federal authority on that matter.

  • ||

    You seem to be forgetting that the north was systematically enslaving blacks as well.

    For example, if you read about the Burns case, you will learn that the judiciary in the north routinely ruled that runaway slaves had to be returned to their masters. They chose to knuckle under to the fugitive slave act notwithstanding the appeals of many gifted lawyers, abolotionists and otherwise, to look to higher law as had many of the framers.

    Do you know that saint Abe favored the Corwin amendment? You do know about the Corwin amendment, right?

    Do you know of the "black codes" which existed in one form or another throughout the north? Do you know that saint Abe was a strong supporter of Illinois' black codes?

    Do you know that Gen. Lee freed his slaves before the war and that Grant kept his until AFTER the war?

    Do you know that Lincoln advocated the expatriation of blacks to Liberia, en masse?

    If the north was so righteous, why did the union simultaneously embark upon a campaign to either murder or enslave the entire plains population of indians? Guess who said, "the only good indian is a dead indian"? It was not a confederate.

    You need to come loaded for bear on this topic. Else you get clawed to death.

  • dennis||

    Lee only freed those slaves because his father in law's will required it and he waited until the latest possible date to do it. This isn't to defend Grant, who was a scoundrel, but there is no good reason to defend Robert E. Lee.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Guess who said, "the only good indian is a dead indian"?

    James M. Cavanaugh.

  • lawguy||

    Whatever else you've got to say Lee did not free his (actually his wife's slaves) and Grant had none at the start of the war let alone at the finish.

  • ||

    "Sir, if you ever again presume to speak disrespectfully of General Grant in my presence, either you or I will sever his connection with this University."
    General Robert E. Lee.

    "In common with most Southern soldiers, I had a very kindly feelings towards General Grant, not only on account of his magnanimous conduct at Appomattox, but also for his treatment of me at the close of hostilities." Col. John S. Mosby

    "He was the truest as well as the bravest man that ever lived," was the remark made by General James Longstreet, when he recovered today from the emotion caused by the sad news of General Grant's death.

    It's funny how those who actually fought in the Civil War have a totally opposite viewpoint from those folks who romanticize the war or blame the North. There was plenty of blame to go around on both sides of the conflict.

    Grant married into a Southern slave owning family, he did not agree with the notion and freed them when he was able to do so, not from any purported act of hypocrisy. Lee also favored expatriation of slaves to Liberia, as did many in that period who thought that was them most moral position to take regarding the slavery issue.

  • Tony||

    The South's problem was with states' rights: Northern states' rights to enact anti-slavery laws. They didn't like laws that, for instance, forbade transporting slaves through the state.

    South Carolina wanted to make it criminal to speak or assemble against slavery.

    Mississippi's secession declaration read: "Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery — the greatest material interest of the world."

  • Tony||

    The South's problem was with states' rights: Northern states' rights to enact anti-slavery laws. They didn't like laws that, for instance, forbade transporting slaves through the state.

    South Carolina wanted to make it criminal to speak or assemble against slavery.

    Mississippi's secession declaration read: "Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery — the greatest material interest of the world."

  • ||

    conflating the secession with the war, as if they were simultaneous!

    One was clearly the cause of the other.

  • Obviousman||

    Just curious here, but once a state ratifies the Constitution, they're locked in forever, even if it's against their will?

    It seems there was a war fought which established that very principle. You may have heard of it -- the American Civil War.

  • subnumine||

    To quote James Madison:

    My dear Sir N. York Sunday Evening [July 20, 1788; to Alexander Hamilton]
    Yours of yesterday is this instant come to hand(1) & I have but a few minutes to answer it. I am sorry that your situation obliges you to listen to propositions of the nature you describe. My opinion is that a reservation of a right to withdraw if amendments be not decided on under the form of the Constitution within a certain time, is a conditional ratification, that it does not make N. York a member of the New Union, and consequently that she could not be received on that plan. Compacts must be reciprocal, this principle would not in such a case be preserved. The Constitution requires an adoption in toto, and forever. It has been so adopted by the other States. An adoption for a limited time would be as defective as an adoption of some of the articles only. In short any condition whatever must viciate the ratification. What the New Congress by virtue of the power to admit new States, may be able & disposed to do in such case, I do not enquire as I suppose that is not the material point at present. I have not a moment to add more than my fervent wishes for your success & happiness. Js. Madison

    [P.S.] This idea of reserving right to withdraw was started at Richmd. [in the Virginia Ratifying Convention] & considered as a conditional ratification which was itself considered as worse than a rejection.

  • Sheldon Richman||

    By that reason (as Hummel points out), Great Britain was right in violently trying to stop the American colonies from seceding.

  • ||

    A different president would have laid waste to the South and killed all the traitors and their families. But Lincoln did the best he could.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Which is hilarious when reviewed in light of most all of the rebelling states' ordinances and causes for secession. South Carolina, Mississippi, Georgia, and Texas are love letters to slavery. Alabama declared that merely electing Lincoln to the Presidency was cause enough.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Anonymous Coward,

    Which is hilarious when reviewed in light of most all of the rebelling states' ordinances and causes for secession[...]


    The reasons for secession are well understood and not being debated here: The Southern states were outraged by how the Northern states were nullifying the Fugitive Slave Act; they were ouraged at the growing power of Big Northern Business; they were appalled by the level of anti-South rhetoric from abolitionists; they resented the anti-slavery sympathies in the North; they sorely resented the Tariff... you name it.

    WHATEVER THE REASONS, the secession was ONE thing, the war itself quite ANOTHER. The reason for going to WAR was to bring the seceded states back to the Union, so the Tariff could be levied and collected along all the US ports; it had NOTHING to do with Slavery. Lincoln and the Republicans wanted the Tariff, because that would be the most important source of revenue. States steal, first and foremost; they certainly do not exist to free slaves.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Re: Old Mexican,

    The reasons for secession are well
    understood and not being debated here: The Southern states were outraged by how the Northern states were nullifying the Fugitive Slave Act; they were ouraged at the growing power of Big Northern Business; they were appalled by the level of anti-South rhetoric from abolitionists; they resented the anti-slavery sympathies in the North; they sorely resented the Tariff... you name it.

    I already did name it.

    Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery-- the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product which constitutes by far the largest and most important portions of commerce of the earth. These products are peculiar to the climate verging on the tropical regions, and by an imperious law of nature, none but the black race can bear exposure to the tropical sun. These products have become necessities of the world, and a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization. That blow has been long aimed at the institution, and was at the point of reaching its consummation. There was no choice left us but submission to the mandates of abolition, or a dissolution of the Union, whose principles had been subverted to work out our ruin. -Mississippi, 1861

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Anonymous Coward,
    So what's your contention, that the war was about slavery? Because the secession may have been, either primarily or not, but the war sure wasn't.

  • MNG||

    The War was about not letting a bunch of states just say "hey, we're taking our slaves and going home" when the usual democratic process looked like it was going to impinge on their fondness for enslaving their neighbors.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    The War was about not letting a bunch of states just say "hey, we're taking our slaves and going home"


    You are showcasing your ignorance, MNG. There were FOUR (count them, FOUR) states that did not leave the Union and KEPT the slaves. Maybe you want to argue that keeping slaves was fine as long as one stayed in the Union...

  • MNG||

    I wonder what you think you are proving by asserting that four states that stayed in the Union had slavery? How does that change the fact that the CSA states quite explicitly tried to drop out of the union because they were worried the union would interfere with their favorite past-time of enslaving about 1/3 of their population.

    Those four states were not so upset at the prospect of having their traditions of enslaving their neighbors molested to drop out of the government, the CSA states were. The South has always been a fussy and paranoid bunch when it comes to their right to oppress their black neighbors.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    I wonder what you think you are proving by asserting that four states that stayed in the Union had slavery?


    That this: "The War was about not letting a bunch of states just say 'hey, we're taking our slaves and going home'" makes your case that the war was justified to "free the slaves" somewhat disingenuous.

    How does that change the fact that the CSA states quite explicitly tried to drop out of the union because they were worried the union would interfere with their favorite past-time of enslaving about 1/3 of their population.


    The fact that those FOUR states KEPT their slaves undermines your contention that the war was about slavery, or that the CSA was attacked by the Union because they were leaving with their slaves still enslaved. Since the FOUR slaver union states kept their slaves, yours makes for a silly notion.

  • MNG||

    Ah, see, the mistake you are making is thinking it was all or nothing. The South wanted to have their slave system be unmolested in the present and they feared it being ended in the near future, and they so loved that system they chose to secede rather than face that. The four slave states which stayed didn't see the prospect of having to obey federal impingements and eventual prohibition of slavery as worth seceding over.

    Of course this does not mean that the war was not fought over whether the Southern states could simply "drop out" of the Union because they thought the Union would interfere with their slavery.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    Ah, see, the mistake you are making is thinking it was all or nothing.


    Oh, don't backpedal your way out of it, MNG. YOU brought in this "You States can't take them with you!" canard, not me.

    The South wanted to have their slave system be unmolested in the present and they feared it being ended in the near future


    As it has been said MANY TIMES here, MNG, that was a reason for their secession. Why would you keep beating this dead horse is something I can't fathom. It has been argued that THE WAR was not fought to free slaves, as the FOUR SLAVER STATES that remained UNMOLESTED for a few years attest.

  • MNG||

    The War was fought over whether the states had to bow to federal authority to impinge slavery.

  • MNG||

    The four states did not think seceding was the right response to the possibility of the federal government impinging on their slave systems. The South did. The Union said "you can't secede to escape our authority on this matter guys."

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    The four states did not think seceding was the right response to the possibility of the federal government impinging on their slave systems.


    Who gives a shit what those states thought? The fact is that they were not made to release their slaves in the beginning or even during the war reveals the reason for the war was NOT to set slaves free. You cannot get around that, MNG, it clearly undermines your contention that the Union went after the CSA to free slaves. The facts simply do not support that hypothesis at all.

  • iamtheeviltwin||

    The War was fought over whether the states had to bow to federal authority to impinge slavery.

    You were almost there MNG, I fixed it for you.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Re: OM,

    If the states seceded over slavery (and all of its economic, social, and moral implications) and the war was fought over secession, then yes, the war was ultimately about slavery.

    Did the Union go into because the everyone in Blue was a fire-breathing, John Brown abolitionist and loved black people? No. But the Grays were in no way friendly to the idea or cause of individual liberty or limited government.

    We hold as undeniable truths that the governments of the various States, and of the confederacy itself, were established exclusively by the white race, for themselves and their posterity; that the African race had no agency in their establishment; that they were rightfully held and regarded as an inferior and dependent race, and in that condition only could their existence in this country be rendered beneficial or tolerable. -Texas, 1861

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Anonymous Coward,

    If the states seceded over slavery (and all of its economic, social, and moral implications) and the war was fought over secession, then yes, the war was ultimately about slavery.


    That's a converse error, Anonymous Coward. Just because the secession was to keep slavery does not affirm that the war itself was about slavery.

  • MNG||

    Have to run, so this is my last comment on the subject.

    For the North the (start) of the war was about negating the South's claim that they could avoid federal authority by seceding. The federal authority the South wanted to avoid via secession centered on impingement of their slave systems.

    Consider if Oregon decided to secede because they felt the federal government was going to actively prohibit their euthanasia laws and the feds said "You can't avoid our authority on this matter by seceding, we will force you back." The fact that Washington, with similar laws, does not secede and is not invaded does not mean this was not about euthansia.

  • iamtheeviltwin||

    So this is your arguemnt MNG ---

    YOU know that the Federal Government is about confiscate your property, not because you are currently breaking any laws, but because they are in the process of changing the law.

    YOU decide that it is time to take your property and head to Singapore. Therefore you take your stuff and leave the country.

    YOU have seceded from the Union.

    According to your logic justifying the Civil War it would be just fine for the Federal Government to send armed men to come to Singapore and arrest or kill you in an effort to bring you back.

    Not because you have done anything against the law, but because you left before they changed the laws to affect you.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Re: Old Mexican,

    Well, at least you're willing to admit that the Southerners seceded over slavery. So what was the war "about" then? The great and frightening tariff? The tariffs which, at the time of the first wave of secession, was at its lowest rate since 1816? The same tariff bill that the southern congressmen wrote and pushed through Congress? The tariff that was only successfully raised BECAUSE the southern states seceeded and abandoned their seats in Congress?

    We affirm that these ends for which this Government was instituted have been defeated, and the Government itself has been made destructive of them by the action of the non-slaveholding States. Those States have assume the right of deciding upon the propriety of our domestic institutions; and have denied the rights of property established in fifteen of the States and recognized by the Constitution; they have denounced as sinful the institution of slavery; they have permitted open establishment among them of societies, whose avowed object is to disturb the peace and to eloign the property of the citizens of other States. They have encouraged and assisted thousands of our slaves to leave their homes; and those who remain, have been incited by emissaries, books and pictures to servile insurrection. -South Carolina, 1860

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    Like I said in the morning links I'm usually tickled at how H&R Civil War links often bring out "extremists in the defense of liberty" to the defense of the slavery-based Confederacy.


    Please indicate where anybody here who professes to be a libertarian makes a case FOR slavery, you dolt.

  • MNG||

    I didn't say you guys defend slavery directly, just the slave-based CSA.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    I didn't say you guys defend slavery directly, just the slave-based CSA.


    Defending their right to secede is not the same as defending their "right" to keep slaves, MNG, just like defense attorneys are not defending the act of Murder when they defend alleged murderers.

  • MNG||

    How about defending their right to secede when they are seceding because they wanted to their tradition of enslaving their neighbors to go unmolested by the government?

  • Joe R.||

    Is there a reason to secede that you would consider legitimate?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    How about defending their right to secede when they are seceding because they wanted to their tradition of enslaving their neighbors to go unmolested by the government?


    I see: You seek perfection. Only perfect people (and perfect states) should have rights and only perfect people deserve a defense, in your view. People acting like assholes should instead be kept under the yoke of the Fed Gov.

  • MNG||

    It's funny to see self-described uber-libertarian OM see actually enslaving other people as a minor character flaw, equating it with "acting like an asshole."

    This is too rich!

  • Citizen Nothing||

    I'm a big fan of "Cump" Sherman. Lincoln, not so much. What does that make me?

  • Sudden||

    I suggest you read up on Lysander Spooner, noted American abolisionist and anarchist. He actually supported the use of violence to end slavery, but opposed the Civil War of Northern Aggression (and let's be honest, it wasn't a civil war in the sense that the confederacy was not fighting for control over northern territory, it was a failed secession).

  • MNG||

    It's interesting how the War of Northern Aggression started with the South assaulting a federal fort...

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,
    It wasn't a Federal fort, it belonged to South Carolina. You don't even know your own history.

  • MNG||

    So the South Carolinians started the war by assaulting their own fort?

    I knew they were dumb but...

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    So the South Carolinians started the war by assaulting their own fort?


    Are you really that stupid, MNG, or are you trying to play one? The fort was ILLEGALLY occupied by an US Army Major, who then refused to LEAVE. This is history, contained even in Wikipedia. Are you that keen on showcasing your ignorance and sloth?

    FUCK YOU!

  • MNG||

    Dude, Sumter was one of many forts built under the 'Third American System of Coastal Defense.'

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S.....ird_system

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    Dude, Sumter was one of many forts built under the 'Third American System of Coastal Defense.'


    AND????

    http://www.mycivilwar.com/battles/610412.htm

    On April 12th, Maj. Robert Anderson and 127 men held Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor, with Capt. Abner Doubleday being second in command. The men had been neither supplied nor reinforced since occupying the fort the night of December 26, 1860. Their presence caused a crisis between the U.S. government and the seceded state of South Carolina, offended at Union troops sitting on sovereign territory. Confederate forces, commanded by Brig. Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard, had thrown up batteries on the harbor's shores north and south of Fort Sumter and trained guns on it from Forts Moultrie and Johnson. Fort Sumter mustered only 66 cannon, several unmounted. At 3:20 A.M., the crisis came to a head.

    Again, you ignore your own history.

  • MNG||

    The fort was built with federal money appropriated by Congress guided by federal directions. It wasn't South Carolina's because it happened to be in that state anymore than if you owned a condo in S. Carolina it is theirs.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Not gonna defend MNG, but it's odd to see a libertarian arguing that a parcel of property belongs to a state simply because it resides within its territorial boundaries (as asserted by the state). IIRC, negotiations were ongoing regarding the status of the fort when CSA forces attacked.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: The Immaculate Trouser,

    Not gonna defend MNG, but it's odd to see a libertarian arguing that a parcel of property belongs to a state simply because it resides within its territorial boundaries


    Why would it be odd? It explains WHY the fort was attacked, and it also explains why it was NOT an attack on the Union. Again, we're talking about a "Gulf of Tonkin Incident," 1860s version. I am not defending the right of a State to have property, I am pointing out a FACT.

  • MNG||

    What is your FACT? That the Fort existed in an area that the state of S. Carolina called "theirs?" It also existed in an area that the United States said was "theirs." More importantly it was built with federal monies under federal direction.

    It's like you are arguing that federal buildings like post offices built and operated by the feds in states 'really' belong to the states because they exist in the state.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    What is your FACT? That the Fort existed in an area that the state of S. Carolina called "theirs?"


    Yes. Which makes your argument that "they attacked the poor, defenseless Union, the dastards!" that less cogent.

    It's like you are arguing that federal buildings like post offices built and operated by the feds in states 'really' belong to the states because they exist in the state.


    Or the buildings operated by the Crown belong to the Crown even after the American Colonies seceded from Britain...

    Oh, you forgot about that? Ohhhhh.

    The fact that the states seceded and became SOVEREIGN means that their territory IS sovereign from Federal Authority. The Fed Gov could have perfectly asked the CSA Congress for COMPENSATION for those forts. Instead, Lincoln chose to kill 600,000 Americans, all just for a fort.

    And a Tariff.

  • MNG||

    So if you constructed a house in s. Carolina and S. Carolina decided to secede that house is S. Carolinas?

    The Fort was federal property, they paid to build it, they operated it. In any other situation if a government demanded property built and operated by another to be turned over to them at gunpoint you would shit a brick.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    So if you constructed a house in s. Carolina and S. Carolina decided to secede that house is S. Carolinas?


    No, it would be mine.

    The Fort was federal property, they paid to build it, they operated it.


    Hey, idiot - the Fed Gov has NO MONEY, makes NO things, produces NOTHING. Those forts were paid with taxpayer money, part of which was levied from South Carolinians.

    I am pretty sure you would not be so particular if the Cuban government asked the US to leave the Guantanamo Bay fort, which is really Cuban territory, only because it's Cuba, and not South Carolina.

  • MNG||

    "Hey, idiot - the S. Carolina Gov has NO MONEY, makes NO things, produces NOTHING."

    So what made the fort the government of S. Carolina? At least the feds paid for, directed the building of and operated the fort.

    Gitmo actually proves my point. If the Chinese government paid to construct a building in S. Carolina the latter could not rightly just demand the building be turned over to them.

  • ||

    FUCK YOU!

    This is why libertarianism remains a fringe cult of basement dwellers.

  • crossofcrimson||

    "This is why libertarianism remains a fringe cult of basement dwellers."

    To be fair, I don't even have a basement.

  • dennis||

    Did you even read the articles? Nothing in them could even vaguely resembles a defense of the south anymore than saying Arsenic sucks counts as an endorsement of cyanide.

  • ||

    Yes you are right. People here are not arguing over Hummel, Richmond, et al, but displaying outrage over the implied insult of the Kochtopus posting a link to the level headed Austrians at F.E.E. instead of deranged Austrians at LvMI.

  • Sheldon Richman||

    Please: Richman.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    It is more the methods that were employed by the Union side, and the federal government expansion brought about by the end of the Civil War, that are bemoaned by libertarians than the end of the "peculiar institution". Yes, streams sometimes get crossed with CSA apologists, but I think you mis-characterize the libertarian argument.

    It is analogous to libertarians' opposition to the Iraq war, and to their opposition to portrayals of all Iraqi as either irredeemably evil or as noble savages. Baathist Iraq, like the CSA, was a very un-libertarian place, but the force used to depose both regimes is what is deplored.

    Personally, I find what Lincoln did to be acceptable given the circumstances, but I am also not a miniarchist or an anarchist.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Also, libertarians enjoy the odd romantic portrayal of the underdog. The post-Reconstruction South is a perfect backdrop for a lot of these scenarios for both black and white sharecroppers -- "the man" keeping them down, local powers-that-be dealing unfairly with both. To paraphrase Faulkner, having an accent meant working twice as hard for half the recognition.

    The libertarians have thus, oddly, been attracted both to extreme abolitionism and Southern revisionism; something about rooting for the underdog is etched into the American psyche, and even more so for libertarians.

  • Warty||

    it was clear that nature at Washington was precisely the same as nature at St. Petersburg.

    Well, duh.

  • Pip||

    today’s 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War of Northern Aggression.

  • ||

    More like Northern Passive-Aggression. The existence of a single descendant of any CSA official, solider or apologist means that the North failed to bring the war to its rightful conclusion.

  • OO||

    oh gee another thread to post yet more neo-confederate horseshit.

  • marx||

    yes my bro abe ordered his marxist generals to drive the red army deeep into the peaceful christian south & convert them to unionism & fanatical jihadism.

  • zulus||

    what about those negro loosers we sold you? oh that's right, they emmigrated to liberia.

  • Fat Gut Greybeard in Auburn||

    yes my bro abe ordered his marxist generals to drive the red army deeep into the peaceful christian south libertopian paradise & convert them to unionism & fanatical jihadism.

    FIFY

  • Frédéric Bastiat||

    Ne pas nourrir les trolls.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    I, too, am somewhat mystified by the glorification of that great Band of Losers.
    Should the Union have let them go? Probably. Did they deserve to have their asses handed to them in a hat? Most definitely.

  • Fat Gut Greybeard in Auburn||

    Slavery had absolutely nothing to do with the war of norther aggression.

    In fact, slavery never existed in the south, that is just a lie used by the tariffists to justify their immorality.

  • ||

    I like the end of slavery part but don't like the means used. Nor do I care for the practical repudiation of the ideals of the Declaration of Independence.

    Again, slavery ending good, rest bad.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Citizen Nothing,

    I, too, am somewhat mystified by the glorification of that great Band of Losers.


    I would be mystified, too, if it only were true.

    Should the Union have let them go?


    I am pretty sure you only join those clubs where it is understood that the only way to leave is to shoot your way out, or die trying. That would give me a reason to understand your doubts about the validity of seceding from the union.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    I, too, am somewhat mystified by the glorification of that great Band of Losers.

    Sure my great-great-grandpappy fought on the behalf of racist, gentrified, pseudo-aristocrats who were opposed to liberty, but he was REAL brave when he done it!

  • prolefeed||

    You seem to be confusing "glorification" with "maintaining the right to secede as a bulwark against federal overreach".

    Do you really think the federal government would be anywhere near as powerful as it is today if states could secede, and then enter into negotiations about the terms of re-entry into the union?

  • prolefeed||

    For that matter, how obnoxious could states act if individual cities or counties were free to secede and form their own states or join neighboring states? Would Seattle be able to bully around Eastern Washington? Would New York City get to bully around the rural upstate counties?

    The ability to walk away from the negotiating table is a vital prerequisite to not getting screwed over.

  • MNG||

    Why stop at cities? Neighborhood blocks should be able to shop around when they don't like the laws around them too. I'd like it if my street would declare for California just so's I can say I'm banging a California Girl!

  • Joe R.||

    You know, annexation actually does happen all the fucking time. So, you inadvertently make a point here.

  • crossofcrimson||

    "Why stop at cities?"

    I like the way you think - and once you intellectually work your way to an individual's right to secede, you can wear the anarchist hat too.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Would the CSA have respected the people of Scott County, TN's wishes to secede from Tennessee and remain in the Union?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Anonymous Coward,

    Would the CSA have respected the people of Scott County, TN's wishes to secede from Tennessee and remain in the Union?


    Tu quoque for me!
    Tu quoque for you!
    I like a fallacy!
    How about you?

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Re: Old Mexican,

    One man's tu quoque is another man's unclean hands.

  • MNG||

    Interestingly there were thousands of people in the CSA who were not allowed to secede.

    They were called slaves.

  • Bradley||

    Interestingly there were thousands of people in the CSA who were not allowed to secede. They were called slaves.

    True, but how does criticizing Lincoln's refusal to allow the CSA to secede amount to condoning the CSA's refusal to free the slaves?

    Unless you're can point out just who made this error, you're knocking over a strawman.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Not really. To defend the CSA's "right" to secede and form a slave-state, you are defending slavery. This is to some extent about whether you prize state rights more than individual rights. A disturbingly large number of 'libertarians' seem to do just that.

  • Bradley||

    To defend the CSA's "right" to secede and form a slave-state

    No one is defending that. Here, maybe this will help:

    (a) Everyone has the right to secede
    (b) Some people have the "right" to own others as property

    Claiming (a) does not imply (b). I don't know how much simpler I can make this.

  • Cytotoxic||

    This neo-Confederate horseshit makes me real glad to be an Objectivist. The federal government has a moral imperative to defend the rights of its citizens. I'll take some federal 'overreach' over slavery thank you.

  • crossofcrimson||

    "I'll take some federal 'overreach' over slavery thank you."

    Just curiously, exactly how many hundreds of thousands of lives would it take to turn from "some federal overreach" to too much federal overreach?

    And I'm not posing that as a rhetorical question. I think when people think about the Civil War they just parcel out, in their minds, some clean dichotomy between a homogeneously anti-slave north and a homogeneously pro-slave south. We're not allowed to take into consideration the terrible things the north may have done. Nor are we allowed to take into consideration that there were an awful lot of men, women, and children in the South who were starved or slaughtered who never owned a slave in their life. And I'm not laying that out there as a "the South was right" argument. I'm just saying there's something to be said for being a little more critical of things...even when it would seem controversial to do so.

  • crossofcrackers||

    "Nor are we allowed to take into consideration that there were an awful lot of men, women, and children in the South who were starved or slaughtered who never owned a slave in their life."

    That's the best part.

  • ||

    One of my favorite Flashman scenes is where he points out that, somehow, slavery was abolished throughout the British empire without a shot being fired, and that the Americans could have saved themselves the trouble if they hadn't seceded from the Commonwealth.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Wouldn't have happened. It was hard enough to mobilize British society with only east India and some other scattered Brit colonies using slaves for cash crops; a seemingly stable region with extremely profitable cash crops and plenty of whites would have been a powerful force against abolitionism. Brazil didn't make slavery illegal until the turn of the century -- and that was with its mother country eliminating slavery 400 years prior.

    America seceding was probably a Pareto-improving outcome when it comes to the stop of slavery worldwide.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Not true. The Boer War was fought over slavery.

  • MNG||

    It's good to know that if I feel the need to enslave my neighbors when the police come to stop me I can simply declare that I have seceded from the Union and it's silly anti-slavery laws and True Libertarians like OM and prolefeed will defend me!

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    It's good to know that if I feel the need to enslave my neighbors when the police come to stop me I can simply declare that I have seceded from the Union and it's silly anti-slavery laws and True Libertarians like OM and prolefeed will defend me!


    You can't afford me. Tough luck.

  • Bingo||

    You are being disingenuous by conflating (and equating) slavery and secession.

    Do you really not support the right for minorities (ethnic, religious, ideological, or otherwise) that dominate a portion of a geographical region in a larger country to leave it? You would deny peoples the ability to create a government based on their own customs and traditions in favor of a monolithic state?

    So this is what so-called "liberals" believe. What a goddamn misnomer.

  • MNG||

    So if I decide to enslave my neighbors and the cops come to my house to make me stop I can yell "I secede to create a government based on my own customs and traditions" and you will defend me?

    Sweet!

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    So if I decide to enslave my neighbors and the cops come to my house to make me stop I can yell "I secede to create a government based on my own customs and traditions" and you will defend me?


    You can't afford me, MNG. You're on your own, kiddo.

  • Bingo||

    You really have a difficult time separating the two issues. That's not very honest.

  • MNG||

    The two issues are inseperable because you have a case of a group enslaving other humans and then invoking the right to secede in order to have their slave-system go unmolested. My analogy is dead on apt.

  • Bingo||

    If you frame it that way, the freeing of the slaves would be seen as a rescue mission. But the Union side didn't fight to free the slaves, they fought to subjugate the populace and conquer the territory so they could re-integrate it into the Union.

  • MNG||

    Interestingly they re-integrated it along with abolishing slavery and demanding equal protection of all citizens...

    The War was not fought to free the slaves per se, it was fought over the South's desire to not have their system of slavery be controlled under federal law.

  • Bingo||

    Pretty much. I don't think we're disagreeing on a lot here. Lincoln's election (and the imminent victory of abolitionism) may have been spark that ignited the powder keg, but there was plenty of animosity between North and South to fill up the powder keg to begin with, including years of back-and-forth court rulings on the slavery.

    Anyways, it's my personal belief that the ability for states to peaceful secede would be a good thing. If Chicago doesn't agree to the Second Amendment it should be able to say "Look guys, we had fun but we think the Constitution is outdated and doesn't apply to this day and age. We're going to form our own government. No hard feelings and all, you're our neighbors and we'll still be trading, we just got different priorities. Anyone who wants to join us is welcome!"

  • MNG||

    I don't think secession in general is a good idea and I think the civil war is a good reason why. Sometimes federal authority will be on the side of liberty and justice and state authority will not. The civil war was about the latter, a bunch of states wanting to preserve a monstorous violation of rights and afraid federal authority was going to be used to impinge that.

    Seceding to avoid a federal policy you think unjust sounds good, but seceding to defend an unjust state policy from what would be a more just result compelled by federal authority doesn't.

  • crossofcrimson||

    "My analogy is dead on apt."

    Alright, let's lay it out for you. People would have a right to force you and anyone else on your block who's holding someone in servitude to give up the ghost on it. You don't have a right to bomb or burn down the whole neighborhood (which may include many innocents) in the process. That's why the analogy is a bad one.

  • Bingo||

    Although, to answer your question.

    1) I would support your wish to secede and form your own nation

    2) The cops would be in the right to rescue the citizens of a foreign nation that you had forcibly enslaved.

  • MNG||

    "The cops would be in the right to rescue the citizens of a foreign nation that you had forcibly enslaved."

    So you would support the army going into the South to rescue the citizens of a foreign nation they had forcibly enslaved?

  • dennis||

    Sure, but as an anarchist the resources to fund the rescue would have to be privately raised (I'd donate) and the rescuers could not destroy property or kill people unless in self defense or defense of the slaves they aimed to rescue.

  • MNG||

    Let's say that following the Heller and McDonald decisions New England decided to pass laws confiscating all firearms from their citizens and barring any citizen from leaving, and when the federal government told them to abide by Heller and McDonald they said "screw you we are seceding do we can keep our draconian gun laws!"

    I guess you would defend that? You wouldn't? But you would defend doing the same thing to defend TOTAL, ACTUAL ENSLAVEMENT?

    Yeah, pardon moi if I've always found paleo-libertarian's love of liberty to be a bit hollow.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: MNG,

    Let's say that following the Heller and McDonald decisions New England decided to pass laws confiscating all firearms from their citizens and barring any citizen from leaving, and when the federal government told them to abide by Heller and McDonald they said "screw you we are seceding do we can keep our draconian gun laws!"


    You mean like in Chicago post-MacDonald? The only difference is that people are still allowed to leave Chicago... Still...

    I guess you would defend that? You wouldn't?


    I would, and I would also defend the right of the people of New England to revolt and place their politicians against the wall. Would YOU defend that, MNG?

  • Bingo||

    Actually, I'm fully in favor of that scenario. If DC, Chicago, and whatever geographic region wants to form their own country, great. Hell, I might even move there. This one-size-fits-all model of federal government is creating way too many problems because the United States does not have a uniform culture.

  • Alice Bowie||

    This blog stream is the summary as for why I am not libertarian.

    I don't believe for one minute that the FREE market would have resolved anything here. And, you any of you were slaves, I'm sure you'd feel different.

    The difference is that I do look at it from the perspective of slave...and not just the people making the money.

    But if it makes any of you feel better, I do feel that we probably should have never fought the civil war and just let the racist southern inbreds have their own country...along with many of you guys. And this way, you conservatives/libertarians could keep your slavery and free market.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Alice Bowman,

    This blog stream is the summary as for why I am not libertarian.


    Bullshit.

    I don't believe for one minute that the FREE market would have resolved anything here.


    The market solves scarcity problems, you halfwit.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    "I don't believe for one minute that the FREE market would have resolved anything here."

    You don't think that defending the right of blacks to voluntarily exchange their labor would have done anything for them?

  • MNG||

    A libertarian nation would have no slavery, it is fundamentally incompatible. But if a chunk of that libertarian nation were to enslave a third of their population and declare they are a different nation now then libertarians like OM and prole would defend that.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re:MNG,

    But if a chunk of that libertarian nation were to enslave a third of their population and declare they are a different nation now then libertarians like OM and prole would defend that.


    I would not defend slavery at all - you still conflate defending a right to secede with defending slavery! You're a hypocrite, MNG.

  • MNG||

    You don't defend slavery, you defend the right secession. Namely the right of people to secede to preserve slavery from erosion via federal authority.

  • crossofcrimson||

    "You don't defend slavery, you defend the right secession. Namely the right of people to secede to preserve slavery from erosion via federal authority."

    OK - let's try to step back from the directly political for a second. Let's say we have three groups of people. One is a group of five. One is a group of fifty. And another a group of 150. They are all part of a larger group of 150 (the group of 5 is part of the group of fifty, and the group of fifty is part of the group of 150).

    As an outside observer you see two things occurring. You see that some in the group of fifty are subordinating individuals in the group of five against their will. You and OM clearly see this as being wrong.

    Similarly something is occurring between the larger group and those fifty. The larger group wants to stop the subordination of the five individuals. It proceeds to (largely indiscriminately) beat the fifty into submission.

    OM sees this as also being tragic - in that, firstly, many of the people being beaten into submission (of the fifty) had nothing to do with the subordination of the five individuals. On top of that there is a foreboding claim of unequal authority, now, between the fifty and the larger group.

    But saying that he's implicitly defending slavery by being against the later action is presuming the premise of your argument as being neutral - that this action was either the only or best option available, and that the benefits outweighed the costs (morally). But that doesn't necessarily follow. In fact, that's exactly the contention.

    Granted, it's a little hard to grapple with OM's view because its controversial. Few are going to side with you by default. But, if we're not assuming away the premise at the outset, it seems pretty uncharitable to say that he implicitly supports or defends slavery. Frankly, he could be pressing you more on an inverse view that you implicitly, or even explicitly, support the slaughtering of hundreds of thousands of people (many of them innocent). But you don't support that - you just believe that the costs of taking no action outweighed the lives of those lost. So, although it's much easier to make your case in some respects (because the war did happen and the slaves were freed...and we don't know what would have happened without the war for sure), there's still nothing less defensible regarding his position at the start. It would probably be a good idea to give people the benefit of the doubt sometimes.

  • kArupt||

    ^^^this

  • Jim||

    Purely as a thought-exercise, if the war aims HAD been primarily to free the slaves, would you then have supported it, OM?

    For example, the slaves were residents of the Union, which the Confederacy claimed as their own, though the slaves had no say in the matter. Seems a fair Union demand would have been, "These were our people, and they should be allowed to freely move up here if they so choose. If any wish to remain with you as slaves, that will be their decision."

    Then, when the probable rejection of said offer comes from the Confederacy, the Union would have a very clear duty to step in militarily and protect their residents, in order to facilitate their ability to move north if they so desire. Essentially saying that the south will not be allowed to involuntarily retain those who were under the jurisdiction of the US gov't against their wishes. Obviously this would also include freeing the slaves in the border states.

    I'm not saying any of this was in any way likely, just trying a thought experiment on when Union military intervention may have been justified.

  • Old Douchican||

    Preposterous.

    Slavery is the highest form of liberatianism!

  • Fat Gut Graybeard||

    It's not like the Negros can manage their own affairs.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    That wasn't the notion being discussed. Alice specifically states that he/she/it does not see how the plight of blacks would have improved in a free market system. Defending the right of slaves to voluntarily exchange their labor is one way among several in which a libertarian regime would have improved the lot of black slaves. Indeed, he specifically states that he does not believe that the Civil War should have been fought, making clear that his beef was not with the anti-war tendencies of libertarians in this regard.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Ah, nothing like the smell of burnt defeated South in the morning. Lincoln wasn't perfect but he and Sherman are owed a great deal for their application of total war. We should be copying them for Afghanistan.

    OM and other bitchy secessionists: fuck you. You are morally disgusting if you think that states can secede to form a slave nation-and that is what the Confederacy was-without so much as a referendum. The South started it when they didn't abolish slavery and submit to freedom.

  • Jack On||

    I don't think libertarians will get very far in the black community with a "the South had every right to leave the Union in order to continue your enslavement" line.

  • dennis||

    Sure we could if we emphasized that the slaves then had the right to secede, and pointed out that as deplorable as today's bigotry is (and it should be opposed tooth and nail) the most effectively racist entity hurting African Americans is the state. Unfortunately too many libertarians feel the need to oppose political correctness to try to effectively relate this. Really if you think about it, opposition to racism (or any other form of collectivized bullying) is one of the prime reasons to become a libertarian. Before anyone says, but people have a right to be racists if they want to, I concur, but I also think that philosophy rooted in liberty by extension carries certain values along with it, among these is antiracism.

  • Cytotoxic||

    How would the blacks secede? They had no land or established community beyond a slavehouse. No contiguous geographic entity. Nor did they have much weaponry.

  • Fat Gut Graybeard||

    Theories matter not capabilities.

  • crossofcrimson||

    "I don't think libertarians will get very far in the black community with a "the South had every right to leave the Union in order to continue your enslavement" line."

    I think someone mentioned it earlier, but if you want to get the feel of the anti-Lincoln stuff in the libertarian community, reading Spooner is a good start to see where they are coming from. And if you think it's pretty unfair to paint Spooner as a sympathizer for slavery, you'd do a great deal to extend the same courtesy to some people similarly controversial views in the libertarian community.

  • ||

    Not to be picky, but they actually did have referendums on secession in the South. And, they did not need to secede to for a slave-nation....the US already was one, and remained so until after the war. Slaves were held in the north-Delaware and Maryland throughout the war, as well as in parts of LA.

    It is delightful that you think total war is such a wonderful idea, especially when coupled with your dazzling ignorance of History.

  • RyanXXX||

    If you examine this war, or indeed any war, from the POV of the non-aggression axiom there will simply be no good guys. Everyone comes out a villain, except the slaves themselves.

    That's the position I take, as should most libertarians. We don't support what the South did, nor do we support Lincoln's actions.

  • Cytotoxic||

    To hold such a belief betrays you as completely amoral and lacking an understanding of what aggression really is.

  • Asmodai||

    The meme of "the South is racist because I live in the Northeast" is so played out it is not even funny...

    Having lived all over the country (military brat - 15 states growing up) I can tell you with no hyperbole that there is no more racist group than a bunch of cracker Yankees in upstate New York or peninsular Michigan or rural Pennsylvania that have never personally met an honest-to-goodness black person in their entire lives.

    The disdain that the liberal elite in the North have for those of us who choose to live in the South would be comical if it weren't so pathetic...

    Was the War of Yankee Aggression started because of slavery? Anyone with any intellectual honest knows that it was not. Did the tyrant Lincoln try to make it about slavery after Gettysburg? Of course he did.

    Was slavery abhorrent? Of course it was. Did we need to fight a horrific war to free the slaves? No, no we did not. The despicable tyrant Lincoln could have bought and freed every slave in the country for less than the price of fighting the War of Yankee Aggression.

    Only brainwashed liberal Yankee jackasses fervently believe that the War Between the States was started because the racist and evil Southerners hate all blacks and want them to pick cotton while singing Negro spirituals…

  • Cytotoxic||

    A grade spoof. You've really summarized all the revisionist ahistorical bullshit quite nicely.

  • Tony||

    Fiddledeedee!

  • ||

    Asmodai is absolutely right. As a native New Englander, I can asseverate unequivocally that white folks in the greater Boston as well as the college towns like Amherst and Holyoke and New Haven are far more negro unfriendly than than any one I have ever encountered from the south.

  • ||

    Wow what a thread.

    OM is continuing his valiant efforts to get MNG to understand that words have meanings. The Randian is cheering aggressive war because it was done for a higher purpose. Oh, and one of the last acceptable prejudices is on full display.

  • kArupt||

    So After all that i'm still kind of confused... Does the REASON for secession negate the RIGHT of secession? That appears to be MNG's central arguement, that the South only wanted to leave the union because they feared X, Y, and Z. I don't think he ever addressed whether or not they had a right to leave regardless of their terrible horrible reason for leaving.

    Sort of like Obama saying bombing Libya is okay, and not worrying about the legalities, because of the reason we're bombing Libya, as if rules and laws and contracts are okay to break and force to be initiated if you have a good enough reason/excuse to do so....

  • kArupt||

    ... but then again, i'm trying to use Reason instead of resorting to "OMG THEY WERE SLAVERS!!!1!!", yeah they were slavers, that sucked, we get it, i'm black i totally get it. That still doesn't answer the question of whether they had a right to leave the union regardless of their reason for leaving the Union. On whether slavery could have been eliminated in the South short of war as it had been throughout most of the North and the rest of the world?

    I think we can have that conversation 150 years later without resorting to "thanks for defending slavery assholezzz!"

    use your f*ckin brains please

  • ||

    You guys are hilarious.

    You think that all governments are illegitimate, all governments steal, all governments coerce, all governments oppress.

    There was a government 150 years ago that enslaved people, that freely used government force and coercion to maintain slavery. They passed a Constitution to make it illegal to ban slavery. Why is it worth defending what these anti-liberty assholes were doing?

    "B-b-but FREEDOM! LIBERTY! The RIGHT to own slaves without being oppressed!" Do you dipshits realize how stupid you sound?

    "What right did the US have to bomb Germany? Those poor Nazis, being invaded by a foreign country that had no respect for human life and killed all these civlians. I'm not defending Hitler or the Holocaust, mind you, I just care about PRINCIPLES. I'm REALLY PRINCIPLED. Hitler was a VICTIM. I hate BIG GOVERNMENT."

    The stupidity is staggering.

  • ||

    I guess this is how you destroy libertarian delusions. You bring them into contact with too much reality. They simply can't cope.

    There is something so unforgiveably real about the slavery and racial hatred.

  • Dear Popeye,||

    Actually what's staggering is your inability to follow a rational argument or separate motive and emotion from any argument.

  • ||

    Praise generals Sherman and Grant for every slavery defending southerner they killed. May they burn in hell.

  • ||

    The amusing thing about the Yankee is how susceptible he is to his own propaganda. What's also amusing is the hysteria exhibited by some when faced with arguments that secession did not need to lead to war, that different portions of the South seceded for different reasons, that there were better ways to end slavery than killing a million Americans, that Lincoln was an inept bungler who missed a golden opportunity to peaceably end slavery in the South by simply refusing to return their runaway slaves. There seems to be an idea that all antebellum Southerners (and, indeed their modern descendents) loved Slavery for its own sake, rather than as a means to an end, and that they always would cling to the institution; that they were, as the trope goes, "always chaotic evil", and thus deserved to be murdered by invading armies. It's interesting that those espousing such a view cannot see how odious it is, and presume that any "right thinking person" would gladly join in their violent beliefs (as in "Praise generals Sherman and Grant for every slavery defending southerner they killed. May they [presumably the southerners, not the generals] burn in hell"). There's also a curious unwillingness to consider the possibility that technological advances would have driven slavery into oblivion as an expensive anachronism, when a cracker with a tractor could work a farm that outyielded the slaveholder with his giant plantation and many slaves.

    There is much criticism here for the Southern states' seceding in order to preserve slavery; I see little criticism for the Northern politicians attempting to preserve slavery in order to stop secession. They passed a Constitutional Amendment (the Corwin Amendment), through both houses of Congress, that preserved slavery forever (it wasn't ratified, though). I see derision for arguments that the Northern states, opposed as they were to Slavery, did nothing to eradicate it in the slave states that remained in the Union. The much-vaunted "Emancipation Proclamation" merely said that any state willing to give up the fighting, and return to the Union, could keep slavery forever. It's hard to reconcile that the purpose of the war was to end slavery, when the invading states kept promising never to end it, if the South would just give up on the idea of independence. This point also refutes the argument that the expansion of slavery in the west was the real cause; the purpose of extending slavery into the west would be to maintain power in the FedGov so as to preserve slavery; if the Northern states were willing to pass Constitutional Amendments that preserved slavery forever, then the need to maintain power--for the purpose of preserving slavery--is lessened.

    THE IMPORTANT POINT FOR LINCOLN'S DEFENDERS TO MAINTAIN IS THAT THE WAR WAS INEVITABLE. Any argument otherwise stains the North's invasion as severe injustice. However, there was in fact no need for war. The South could have seceded peacefully, and then dropped futher and further behind economically, socially, politically, until, hat in hand, it begged for readmittance. Arguments against secession at this point in the discussion usually include conspiracy theories about European political interference and conquest, but these are not persuasive.

    If you want a reason for the (lower) South's secession, look at their secession declarations, and you will see the reason was slavery. If you want, however, to see the reason for the war, look at Lincoln's first inaugural address, where he endorses the Corwin Amendment, and then proceeds to say that there would be no need for bloodshed, except for the purposes of tax collection. In one of his famous quotes, Lincoln declared his aim was "to save the Union"; whether slavery could be abolished in the process was an ancillary issue. The South did not invade the North. "Fort Sumter! Fort Sumter!" I can hear the critics yell. Well, what possible use was Fort Sumter to the FedGov, once the South had gone its own way? It was not necessary to hold the fort against foreign invasion; I seriously doubt that the Federals intended to use it as a base to assist runaway slaves. It was instead a political maneuver to hold a fort in Southern territory; the obvious intention of this maneuver (to all except the self-deluding Yankee) was to incite an attack and thus start a war that could be blamed on the other side. And, of course, the CSA very stupidly played right into the trap. The point is, though, that firing on a fort that could be potentially used by the FedGov for reconquest purposes was not the same as marching on DC and trying to wrest control of the government away. It was not a war of "rebellion", but of "independence."

    And people of that day (except the self-worshipping Yankees who started it) saw it as a war of independence.

    Lord Action, to Gen. Robert E. Lee after the war: "Without presuming to decide the purely legal question, on which it seems evident to me from Madison's and Hamilton's papers that the Fathers of the Constitution were not agreed, I saw in State Rights the only availing check upon the absolutism of the sovereign will, and secession filled me with hope, not as the destruction but as the redemption of Democracy. The institutions of your Republic have not exercised on the old world the salutary and liberating influence which ought to have belonged to them, by reason of those defects and abuses of principle which the Confederate Constitution was expressly and wisely calculated to remedy. I believed that the example of that great Reform would have blessed all the races of mankind by establishing true freedom purged of the native dangers and disorders of Republics. Therefore I deemed that you were fighting the battles of our liberty, our progress, and our civilization; and I mourn for the stake which was lost at Richmond more deeply than I rejoice over that which was saved at Waterloo."

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