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July 16, 2014


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Until I started closely interacting with Americans online, my reaction to the Confederate battle flag was that it was the flag on the roof of the car from the Dukes of Hazzard.

Kitschy 1980s Americana is exactly the common connection in Europe.

Not that it's important for the situation in the Ukraine, but the Southen battle flag has never to my knowledge been called the American slaveowners flag. However I as a southerner question the use of the Battle flag outside the South. It would seem racist when used by those that don't more fully understand that it can stand for the mens courage and not all of the cause which was more than slavery.
In any case thanks for the explanation. That picture threw me off. And yes I know in the world view it's not all about America or the South.

>>the rebels used two flags: the aforementioned red-blue-and-black tricolor and (for reasons unclear) the Russian naval ensign.

The reasons are quite clear. Donetsk and Lugansk provinces are part of the big maritime territory - Novorussia. It was included to Russia as a result of wars with Turkey. Novorussia was the center of shipbuilding of Russia. In its territory there were many sea military bases. Therefore the Naval Ensign of Russia and Naval Jack of Russia were chosen as Novorussia's modern separatist movement. The only lack of such choice - the Donetsk and Lugansk republics are located in the east of Novorussia. East Novorussia was not connected with navy of Russia actually.

I love comments like the above! I learned something there. Thank you.

"It would seem racist when used by those that don't more fully understand that it can stand for the mens courage and not all of the cause which was more than slavery."

Actually, the cause of the Confederacy really _was_ entirely about slavery, specifically the enslavement of non-whites by whites and how any effort to restrain this practice was an intrusion on the freedom of whites.

Charles Owen: The below link is relevant.


The Civil War really was just about slavery. The easy thought experiment is to ask why California didn't join the confederacy. After all, it was on the southern side with all the other issues, from expansion to tariffs.

A second thought experiment is to try to imagine the bloodshed in Kansas and Missouri happening without slavery. Or the counter-secession of West Virginia. You can't, because those events are clear.

What happened after the Civil War was a long and concerted attempt to turn a slaveowners' revolt into something else. And to an extent, it was about something else --- because a separate Southern nationalism had crystallized around slavery.

As for the flag itself, well, Vladimir Putin says the same thing about the Red Flag. It doesn't just stand for Communism, but for the heroism and bravery of the soldiers who fought in the Great Patriotic War. That may be true ... but that doesn't make the banner any more popular in the countries that had to live under the Soviet Empire for almost a half-century.

Actually the Confederacy was not at all "about" slavery nor was the US which also had slavery at the time. If it really had been "all about" slavery then why did Lincoln endorse and get the Northern dominated Congress to pass the Corwin Amendment which would have enshrined slavery in the US constitution making it irrevocable? Why did the original 7 seceding states not readily agree to re-enter the union with irrevocable slavery protected by the US Constitution? Obviously, neither side was fighting over slavery.

God, I hate southern nationalist stupidity.

Here's the short version, Dave. If you're unlucky, my friend Carlos will explain the long version to you. Actually, I would enjoy seeing that, but like I said, I hate southern nationalist stupidity. Which may be a way of saying that I hate southern nationalism, since southern nationalism is stupid.

First, it wasn't about anything else. We know this because there were no other disagreements used by secessionists to justify secession. We also know this because the only two that southern apologists have come up with after-the-fact imply that the western and midwestern states should have joined the revolt. Which, you know, they didn't. We also know that those issues were not the cause of secession because it occurred to precisely none of the people making desperate last-ditch attempts to hold the Union together to offer any concessions over those two issues.

Sadly, I don't expect people taken with southern nationalist stupidity to know what those two issues are, so I'll spell 'em out: protectionism and federal infrastructure spending.

Second, it was about slavery. More explicitly, it was about the expansion of slavery. We know this because it was the only point of disagreement. Which the secessionists took great pains to explain. They rightly took Lincoln's election as a sign that Northern sentiment had turned decisively against the organized torture that was hereditary forced labor. They also rightly realized that the window of opportunity was closing fast as northern industrial strength rose.

Finally, and most relevantly, everyone knew that the Corwin amendment was toothless. I am tempted to leave why as an exercise to the reader, but I won't. After all, one of the readers has been bamboozled by southern nationalist stupidity.

The Corwin amendment banned future amendments that would give Congress new powers to alter slavery. "No amendment shall be made to the Constitution which will authorize or give to Congress the power to abolish or interfere, within any state, with the domestic institutions thereof, including that of persons held to labor or service by the laws of said state."

Well, that was a fucking easy concession for the abolitionists, because the fact that there were 15 slave states did a pretty good job of preventing any anti-slavery amendments until the number of free states hit 45 ... which was not going to happen anytime soon. Even you think that Delaware and Maryland were going to abolish slavery in the immediate future (near certain in Delaware, less likely in Maryland), then the abomination of slavery was still safe from constitutional amendments until the number of free states reached 39 ... which was still not going to happen for decades, if ever.

In other words, Mr. Evans, the Corwin amendment was complete bullshit and every side knew it. Lincoln gave away absolutely nothing by endorsing it and the slavers gained absolutely nothing by its passage. The Crittenden compromise was the real thing, but the Republicans were not going to have that.

Now that you've seen the error of your ways I expect that you'll slap your forehead, say, "Of course!" and stop spouting southern nationalist bullshit. Or not. And yes, even Northerners can spout southern nationalist bullshit. Now, the fact that you're posting through a Georgia IP address makes it somewhat likely that you are not originally from the North. Which means that I should take into account the godawful school systems down there, loaded through with southern nationalism and the corresponding stupidity.

Over to you, Carlos. I've got popcorn.

Hi Dave. Thanks for stating that the country was not fighting about black lives and the principle of liberty and justice for all. I have news for you: the U.S did.

God I hate PC Revisionist dogma...mostly because its stupid as well as being historically illiterate. Anybody who has actually bothered to read the direct sources knows there were several issues about which the Northern and Southern political establishments disagreed. Tariffs were a source of bitter disagreement and prompted the Nullification Crisis in the 1830's.

The fact that the Republican Party whose central plank in the 1860 Election was protectionism and subsidies for (overwhelmingly Northern based industries) and for infrastructure projects again overwhelmingly in Northern states hardly makes a case that "it was all about slavery" as the PCers would have us believe. They were quite willing to protect slavery so long as the federal government largesse continued to flow to their political supporters. The Southern states did not agree to this.

In your next paragraph you try to play the "expansion of slavery" card. Yet if this is so....why secede? By seceding, the Southern states were giving up any claims to US territory and thus any chance of expanding slavery to those territories. Their chosen solution was to give up the very thing you claim they were fighting over? That makes zero sense.

In your next paragraph you attempt idiotically, to claim the Corwin Amendment was "toothless". How so? It passed both houses of the Northern Dominated Congress with the requisite supermajority AFTER the Southern delegation withdrew. It was signed by the president and Lincoln (who had been its architect) publicly endorsed it in his inaugural address. It was ratified by 3 states already...yet you claim it was "toothless"? No, it would have been a constitutional amendment. It would have taken another constitutional amendment to overturn - and that was not going to happen so long as the Southern States supported it. Ergo, it would have been irrevocable - not that there was any great sentiment in the Northern states for abolishing slavery anyway. It would not have been "toothless". It is just inconvenient and embarrassing for the stupid arguments you are trying to make.

Here are some inconvenient direct quotes from politicians as well as newspapers at the time which directly refute the anti-historical PC Revisionist dogma you are trying to spew here Mr Maurer.

"The real causes of dissatisfaction in the South with the North, are in the unjust taxation and expenditure of the taxes by the Government of the United States, and in the revolution the North has effected in this government from a confederated republic, to a national sectional despotism." Charleston Mercury 2 days before the November 1860 election

"They [the South] know that it is their import trade that draws from the people's pockets sixty to seventy millions of dollars per annum, in the shape of duties, to be expended mainly in the North, and in the protection and encouragement of Northern interests. These are the reasons why these people do not wish the South to secede from the Union. They, the North, are enraged at the prospect of being despoiled of the rich feast upon which they have so long fed and fattened, and which they were just getting ready to enjoy with still greater gout and gusto. They are mad as hornets because the prize slips them just as they are ready to grasp it. These are the reasons why these people [the North] do not wish the South to secede from the Union." The New Orleans Daily Crescent 21 January 1861

"The north has adopted a system of revenue and disbursements, in which an undue proportion of the burden of taxation has been imposed on the South, and an undue proportion of its proceeds appropriated to the north ... The South as the great exporting portion of the Union has, in reality, paid vastly more than her due proportion of the revenue," John C Calhoun Speech on the Slavery Question," March 4, 1850

On November 19, 1860 Senator Robert Toombs gave a speech to the Georgia convention in which he denounced the "infamous Morrill bill." The tariff legislation, he argued, was the product of a coalition between abolitionists and protectionists in which "the free-trade abolitionists became protectionists; the non-abolition protectionists became abolitionists." Toombs described this coalition as "the robber and the incendiary... united in joint raid against the South."

"Before... the revolution [the South] was the seat of wealth, as well as hospitality....Wealth has fled from the South, and settled in regions north of the Potomac: and this in the face of the fact, that the South, in four staples alone, has exported produce, since the Revolution, to the value of eight hundred millions of dollars; and the North has exported comparatively nothing. Such an export would indicate unparalleled wealth, but what is the fact? ... Under Federal legislation, the exports of the South have been the basis of the Federal revenue.....Virginia, the two Carolinas, and Georgia, may be said to defray three-fourths of the annual expense of supporting the Federal Government; and of this great sum, annually furnished by them, nothing or next to nothing is returned to them, in the shape of Government expenditures. That expenditure flows in an opposite direction - it flows northwardly, in one uniform, uninterrupted, and perennial stream. This is the reason why wealth disappears from the South and rises up in the North. Federal legislation does all this." ----Missouri Senator Thomas Hart Benton

[To a Northern Congressman] "You are not content with the vast millions of tribute we pay you annually under the operation of our revenue laws, our navigation laws, your fishing bounties, and by making your people our manufacturers, our merchants, our shippers. You are not satisfied with the vast tribute we pay you to build up your great cities, your railroads, your canals. You are not satisfied with the millions of tribute we have been paying you on account of the balance of exchange, which you hold against us. You are not satisfied that we of the South are almost reduced to the condition of overseers of Northern Capitalist. You are not satisfied with all this; but you must wage a relentless crusade against our rights and our institutions." Rep. John H. Reagan of Texas

"Neither “love for the African” [witness the Northern laws against him], nor revulsion from “property in persons” [“No, you imported Africans and sold them as chattels in the slave markets”] motivated the present day agitators,"…... “No sir….the mask is off, the purpose is avowed…It is a struggle for political power." Jefferson Davis 1848

“What do you propose, gentlemen of the free soil party? Do you propose to better the condition of the slave? Not at all. What then do you propose? You say you are opposed to the expansion of slavery. Is the slave to be benefited by it? Not at all. What then do you propose? It is not humanity that influences you in the position which you now occupy before the country. It is that you may have an opportunity of cheating us that you want to limit slave territory within circumscribed bounds. It is that you may have a majority in the Congress of the United States and convert the government into an engine of Northern aggrandizement. It is that your section may grow in power and prosperity upon treasures unjustly taken from the South, like the vampire bloated and gorged with the blood which it has secretly sucked from its victim. You desire to weaken the political power of the Southern states, - and why? Because you want, by an unjust system of legislation, to promote the industry of the New England States, at the expense of the people of the South and their industry.” Jefferson Davis 1860 speech in the US Senate

Georgia’s declaration of causes does talk about slavery a lot. It also talks about economics. To wit:

“The material prosperity of the North was greatly dependent on the Federal Government; that of the the South not at all. In the first years of the Republic the navigating, commercial, and manufacturing interests of the North began to seek profit and aggrandizement at the expense of the agricultural interests. Even the owners of fishing smacks sought and obtained bounties for pursuing their own business (which yet continue), and $500,000 is now paid them annually out of the Treasury. The navigating interests begged for protection against foreign shipbuilders and against competition in the coasting trade. Congress granted both requests, and by prohibitory acts gave an absolute monopoly of this business to each of their interests, which they enjoy without diminution to this day. Not content with these great and unjust advantages, they have sought to throw the legitimate burden of their business as much as possible upon the public; they have succeeded in throwing the cost of light-houses, buoys, and the maintenance of their seamen upon the Treasury, and the Government now pays above $2,000,000 annually for the support of these objects. Theses interests, in connection with the commercial and manufacturing classes, have also succeeded, by means of subventions to mail steamers and the reduction in postage, in relieving their business from the payment of about $7,000,000 annually, throwing it upon the public Treasury under the name of postal deficiency. The manufacturing interests entered into the same struggle early, and has clamored steadily for Government bounties and special favors. This interest was confined mainly to the Eastern and Middle non-slave-holding States. Wielding these great States it held great power and influence, and its demands were in full proportion to its power. The manufacturers and miners wisely based their demands upon special facts and reasons rather than upon general principles, and thereby mollified much of the opposition of the opposing interest. They pleaded in their favor the infancy of their business in this country, the scarcity of labor and capital, the hostile legislation of other countries toward them, the great necessity of their fabrics in the time of war, and the necessity of high duties to pay the debt incurred in our war for independence. These reasons prevailed, and they received for many years enormous bounties by the general acquiescence of the whole country.

But when these reasons ceased they were no less clamorous for Government protection, but their clamors were less heeded-- the country had put the principle of protection upon trial and condemned it. After having enjoyed protection to the extent of from 15 to 200 per cent. upon their entire business for above thirty years, the act of 1846 was passed. It avoided sudden change, but the principle was settled, and free trade, low duties, and economy in public expenditures was the verdict of the American people. The South and the Northwestern States sustained this policy. There was but small hope of its reversal; upon the direct issue, none at all.

All these classes saw this and felt it and cast about for new allies. The anti-slavery sentiment of the North offered the best chance for success. An anti-slavery party must necessarily look to the North alone for support, but a united North was now strong enough to control the Government in all of its departments, and a sectional party was therefore determined upon……”

"The people of the Southern States, whose almost exclusive occupation was agriculture, early perceived a tendency in the Northern States to render the common government subservient to their own purposes by imposing burdens on commerce as a protection to their manufacturing and shipping interests. Long and angry controversies grew out of these attempts, often successful, to benefit one section of the country at the expense of the other. And the danger of disruption arising from this cause was enhanced by the fact that the Northern population was increasing, by immigration and other causes, in a greater ratio than the population of the South. By degrees, as the Northern States gained preponderance in the National Congress, self-interest taught their people to yield ready assent to any plausible advocacy of their right as a majority to govern the minority without control." Jefferson Davis Address to Congress April 29, 1861

"Secession, southerners argued, would 'liberate' the South and produce the kind of balanced economy that was proving so successful in the North and so unachievable in the South." (John A. Garraty and Robert McCaughey, The American Nation: A History of the United States to 1877, Volume One, Sixth Edition, New York: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1987, pp. 418-419)

"What were the causes of the Southern independence movement in 1860? . . . Northern commercial and manufacturing interests had forced through Congress taxes that oppressed Southern planters and made Northern manufacturers rich . . . the South paid about three-quarters of all federal taxes, most of which were spent in the North." - Charles Adams, "For Good and Evil. The impact of taxes on the course of civilization," 1993, Madison Books, Lanham, USA, pp. 325-327

As Adams notes, the South paid an undue proportion of federal revenues derived from tariffs, and these were expended by the federal government more in the North than the South: in 1840, the South paid 84% of the tariffs, rising to 87% in 1860. They paid 83% of the $13 million federal fishing bounties paid to New England fishermen, and also paid $35 million to Northern shipping interests which had a monopoly on shipping from Southern ports. The South, in effect, was paying tribute to the North. When in the Course of Human Events: Charles Adams

"Next to the demands for safety and equality, the secessionist leaders emphasized familiar economic complaints. South Carolinians in particular were convinced of the general truth of Rhett's and Hammond's much publicized figures upon Southern tribute to Northern interests." (Allan Nevins, The Emergence of Lincoln, Ordeal of the Union, Volume 2, New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1950, p. 332)

Still think it was "all about" slavery? That seems rather odd given how long and how vociferously Southerners had complained about the grossly unequal taxation and expenditure of federal funds as well as the moves by Northern politicians to centralize all power in the hands of the federal government where they conveniently held a majority.

The fact taht you cared enough to look up my IP address is quite humorous. That you followed that up with a rant about the school systems in the Southern states today is equally telling. It speaks to your bigotry Noel.

I've got popcorn too....and a whole lot more direct sources which refute your dogma.

The U.S. was fighting over black lives and principle of liberty and justice for all Amma?

Care to explain these quotes then?

"Evil and nothing but evil has ever followed in the track of this hideous monster, abolition. Let the slave alone and send him back to his master where he belongs." The Daily Chicago Times Dec 7 1860

opposed abolition of slavery….. proposed slaves should be allowed to marry and taught to read and invest their money in savings accounts...which would "ameliorate rather than to abolish the slavery of the Southern States."...and would thus permit slavery to be "a very tolerable system." New York Times Jan 22 1861

We have no more right to meddle with slavery in Georgia, than we have to meddle with monarchy in Europe. Providence Daily Post Feb 2 1861

"the immense increase in the numbers of slaves within so short a time speaks for the good treatment and happy, contented lot of the slaves. They are comfortably fed, housed and clothed, and seldom or never overworked." New York Herald (the largest newspaper in the country at the time) March 7, 1861

In July 1861, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution, by a nearly unanimous vote, that affirmed that the North was not waging the war to overthrow slavery but to preserve the Union (Klingaman, Abraham Lincoln and the Road to Emancipation, pp. 66-70).

"Lincoln remained unmoved. . . . 'I think Sumner [abolitionist Charles Sumner] and the rest of you would upset our applecart altogether if you had your way,' he told the Radicals. . . . 'We didn't go into this war to put down slavery . . . and to act differently at this moment would, I have no doubt, not only weaken our cause, but smack of bad faith.' Vindication of the president's view came a few weeks later, when the Massachusetts state Republican convention--perhaps the most Radical party organization in the North--defeated a resolution endorsing Fremont's proclamation." (Klingaman, Abraham Lincoln and the Road to Emancipation, pp. 75-76, emphasis added)

"The problem with this lofty rhetoric of dying to make men free was that in 1861 the North was fighting for the restoration of a slaveholding Union. In his July 4 message to Congress, Lincoln reiterated the inaugural pledge that he had 'no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with slavery in the States where it exists.'" (McPherson, Ordeal By Fire, p. 265)

"So the Negro [in the North] is free, but he cannot share the rights, pleasures, labors, griefs, or even the tomb of him whose equal he has been declared; there is nowhere where he can meet him, neither in life nor in death. In the South, where slavery still exists, less trouble is taken to keep the Negro apart: they sometimes share the labors and the pleasures of the white men; people are prepared to mix with them to some extent; legislation is more harsh against them, but customs are more tolerant and gentle". -Alexis De Tocqueville, "Democracy in America", Harper & Row, 1966, p.343.

Ohio Republican Senator John Sherman, (brother of William T. Sherman): “We do not like the Negroes. We do not disguise our dislike…..The whole people of the Northwestern states are opposed to having many Negroes among them and that principle or prejudice has been engraved in the legislation for nearly all of the Northwestern states.”

"the Prejudice of the race appears to be stronger in the States that have abolished slaves than in the states where slavery still exists. White carpenters, white bricklayers and white painters will not work side by side with blacks in the North but do it in almost every Southern state." Alexis de Tocqueville Democracy in America

The same Congress that imposed Reconstruction on the South after the war also imposed racist policies on the American Indians "The same Congress that devised Radical Reconstruction . . . approved strict segregation and inequality for the Indian of the West." (Catton, editor, The National Experience, p. 416)

"But secession, Lincoln argued, would actually make it harder for the South to preserve slavery. If the Southern states tried to leave the Union, they would lose all their constitutional guarantees, and northerners would no longer be obliged to return fugitive slaves to disloyal owners. In other words, the South was safer inside the Union than without, and to prove his point Lincoln confirmed his willingness to support a recently proposed thirteenth amendment to the Constitution, which would specifically prohibit the federal government from interfering with slavery in states where it already existed." (Klingaman, Abraham Lincoln and the Road to Emancipation, pp. 32-33)

On 18 March 1861, the Boston Transcript noted that while the Southern states had claimed to secede over the slavery issue, now "the mask has been thrown off and it is apparent that the people of the principal seceding states are now for commercial independence. They dream that the centres of traffic can be changed from Northern to Southern ports....by a revenue system verging on free trade...."

"Slavery is not the cause of the rebellion ....Slavery is the pretext on which the leaders of the rebellion rely, 'to fire the Southern Heart' and through which the greatest degree of unanimity can be produced....Mr. Calhoun, after finding that the South could not be brought into sufficient unanimity by a clamor about the tariff, selected slavery as the better subject for agitation North American Review (Boston October 1862)

Do the people of the South really entertain fears that a Republican administration would, directly, or indirectly, interfere with their slaves, or with them, about their slaves? If they do, I wish to assure you, as once a friend, and still, I hope, not an enemy, that there is no cause for such fears. Abraham Lincoln, Springfield, Illinois December 22, 1860

“I am not, nor ever have been in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races. I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of Negroes, nor qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people. And I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will ever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. … And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race. Abraham Lincoln

"Negro equality! Fudge! How long, in the government of a god, great enough to make and maintain this universe, shall there continue to be knaves to vend, and fools to gulp, so low a piece of demagogue-ism as this?” Abraham Lincoln

"I can conceive of no greater calamity than the assimilation of the Negro into our social and political life as our equal. . . We can never attain the ideal union our fathers dreamed, with millions of an alien, inferior race among us, whose assimilation is neither possible nor desirable.” -Abraham Lincoln

“anything that argues me into . . . [the] idea of perfect social and political equality with the negro is but a specious and fantastic arrangement of words, by which a man can prove a horse chestnut to be a chestnut horse. . . . I have no purpose to introduce political and social equality between the white and black races. There is a physical difference between the two, which in my judgment will probably forever forbid their living together upon the footing of perfect equality, and inasmuch as it becomes a necessity that there must be a difference, I, as well as Judge Douglas, am in favor of the race to which I belong, having the superior position. (Abraham Lincoln: Speeches and Writings 1832-1858, New York: The Library of America, 1989, edited by Don Fehrenbacher, pp. 511-512)

I fully expect more ad hominem arguments from Noel Maurer and other PC Revisionists. Since they cannot attack the direct sources I've cited and the statements run directly contrary to the fairy tale version of history they want to believe, the ad hominem is all they have left. Pathetic really.....

You're slow, vato. But you're a southern nationalist, and you use the term "PC revisionist" without irony. So it's not surprising.

Walk it through, white man. The Corwin Amendment did nothing to restrict Congress's ability to fuck with slavery. Therefore, it was toothless. Can we stop now? Please? It's embarrassing.

As for the arguments over the tariff and infrastructure: to repeat, nobody in the seceding states asked Congress for that deal. Like, but nobody. And as everyone knows, protectionism actually peaked in the 1820s. Without provoking secession, even though there was that short-lived kerfuffle in South Carolina. And the Morrill Tariff passed after secession. So seriously, compañero, stop it with the selective quotations. That's not how professional historians do things. It's really embarrassing.

Now, there was also that thing about expansion. You raise an interesting question, almost by accident: why did the South secede? Hmmm. Well, if I had to guess, I would say it was because they thought they could get away with it.

And whaddaya know? I'm right. About three seconds of thought will tell you that they wanted expansion in order to keep slavery safe in the Union. They couldn't get that, so why not leave? It wasn't like their relative strength was increasing.

Was there something else in that word fog? Oh, yes, that Northerners were racists. Gee golly! We knew that already. Plenty of anti-semites served in the Roosevelt Administration and FDR was not in WW2 to save the Jews. Doesn't change the accomplishment any.

I know it pains you to realize that your ancestors (I presume) fought for slavery. It pains me to realize that my maternal grandfather fought for Stalinists. Get over it.

I should also point out to you that the email I get telling me that somebody has commented contains your IP address and its location. That said, I might have looked it up anyway. I was curious. Are southern school systems really that bad?

Oh, and Amma is right. About pretty much everything.

By the way, did you really write all that during the Seattle-Green Bay game? That was a great game, Southern man. You missed something awesome, even if my wife's favored team beat the one I preferred.

By the way, Mr. Evans, I've called you out over here: http://noelmaurer.typepad.com/aab/2015/01/a-bad-argument-about-the-causes-of-the-civil-war.html.

It would probably be easier on our readers if you'd move your replies over to that thread. After all, this one is technically about the Russian insurgents in Ukraine and not the slaveowners' revolt.

My wife and I are a bit disappointed that we didn't name our firstborn Denmark. It didn't occur to us until after his birth, although you gotta admit that the name we did pick is awesome. The next child, if they arrive inshallah, will be named Denmark. In fact, my wife wants to write a book entitled Denmark Vesey: American Hero. I'm sure you agree that the appellation is appropriate, although you might perhaps prefer "Southron Hero." I'd be okay with that.

Since the other page would not pull up I will post this last reply here though if you wish to continue on the other page after this, that is fine.

I use the term PC revisionist because it fits. Read what even most in Academia wrote prior to the last generation. It was entirely different. Try Charles Beard for example. His views were widely accepted.

The Corwin Amendment would have permanently limited Congress’ ability to fuck with slavery had anybody had the concern that they would. Read Lincoln’s inaugural address as well as his many statements indicating he had no desire to fuck with slavery. I agree though, it IS truly embarrassing for your position so I can see why you would want to try to dismiss it.

As for the tariff and unequal government expenditures, Southern politicians and newspapers had been complaining bitterly about it for generations. See the whole controversy over the Tariff of Abominations in the 1820’s or the Nullficiation Crisis in the 1830’s The Morrill Tariff which passed both houses of Congress and which was signed into law by the President dramatically jacked up tariff rates. Southerners knew all too well what this would mean for their economy having gone through the bitter experience of very high tariffs in the 1820’s. The Morrill Tariff passed before Lincoln was inaugurated and it was certain he would have signed it had Buchannan not. Protectionism was after all his central campaign issue in 1860. Funny you call all those quotes from newspapers and political leaders “selective”. I guess that’s all you’ve got. And yes, it is really embarrassing – for you.

You say the Southern states seceded because they could not expand and therefore could not keep slavery safe in the Union. YET….The Northern dominated Congress and Lincoln were offering precisely that. To wit, to keep slavery safe in the union. In fact, Lincoln and others openly said that slavery would be much safer within the union than outside of it. After all, if the Southern states left, they would enjoy no protections from the fugitive slave clause in the Constitution. The minute a slave crossed the border which was 1500 miles long, he would be on US territory and thus in a foreign country which had no obligation to return him in bondage to the seceded state. This begs the question of why they would leave then. If it was all over slavery, seceding would be counter productive to that end. If however their real interests were economic in nature ie to have a much lower tariff, then seceding would make perfect sense.

The Northern papers were quite explicit about the economic consequences of the Southern states seceding.

"The South has furnished near three-fourths of the entire exports of the country. Last year she furnished seventy-two percent of the whole...we have a tariff that protects our manufacturers from thirty to fifty percent, and enables us to consume large quantities of Southern cotton, and to compete in our whole home market with the skilled labor of Europe. This operates to compel the South to pay an indirect bounty to our skilled labor, of millions annually." - Daily Chicago Times, December 10, 1860

From a story entitled: "What shall be done for a revenue?"
"That either revenue from duties must be collected in the ports of the rebel states, or the ports must be closed to importations from abroad.... If neither of these things be done, our revenue laws are substantially repealed; the sources which supply our treasury will be dried up; we shall have no money to carry on the government; the nation will become bankrupt before the next crop of corn is ripe.....Allow rail road iron to be entered at Savannah with the low duty of ten per cent, which is all that the Southern Confederacy think of laying on imported goods, and not an ounce more would be imported at New York; the railroads would be supplied from the southern ports. ---New York Evening Post March 12, 1861, recorded in Northern Editorials on Secession, Howard C. Perkins, ed., 1965, pp. 598-599.

The predicament in which both the government and the commerce of the country are placed, through the non-enforcement of our revenue laws, is now thoroughly understood the world over....If the manufacturer at Manchester (England) can send his goods into the Western States through New Orleans at less cost than through New York, he is a fool for not availing himself of his advantage....if the importations of the country are made through Southern ports, its exports will go through the same channel. The produce of the West, instead of coming to our own port by millions of tons to be transported abroad by the same ships through which we received our importations, will seek other routes and other outlets. With the loss of our foreign trade, what is to become of our public works, conducted at the cost of many hundred millions of dollars, to turn into our harbor the products of the interior? They share in the common ruin. So do our manufacturers. Once at New Orleans, goods may be distributed over the whole country duty free. The process is perfectly simple. The commercial bearing of the question has acted upon the North. We now see whither our tending, and the policy we must adopt. With us it is no longer an abstract question of Constitutional construction, or of the reserved or delegated power of the State or Federal Government, but of material existence and moral position both at home and abroad. WE WERE DIVIDED AND CONFUSED UNTIL OUR POCKETS WERE TOUCHED." New York Times March 30, 1861

"The Southern Confederacy will not employ our ships or buy our goods. What is our shipping without it? Literally nothing. The transportation of cotton and its fabrics employs more than all other trade. It is very clear the South gains by this process and we lose. No, we must not let the South go." The Manchester, New Hampshire Union Democrat Feb 19 1861

If the Southern Confederation is allowed to carry out a policy by which only a nominal duty is laid upon the imports, no doubt the business of the chief Northern cities will be seriously injured thereby. The difference is so great between the tariff of the Union and that of the Confederated States, that the entire Northwest must find it to their advantage to purchase their imported goods at New Orleans rather than New York. In addition to this, the manufacturing interest of the country will suffer from the increased importations resulting from low duties….The…[government] would be false to all its obligations, if this state of things were not provided against. March 18, 1861, the Boston Transcript

[the North relied on money from tariffs] “so even if the Southern states be allowed to depart in peace, the first question will be revenue. Now if the South have free trade, how can you collect revenues in eastern cities? Freight from New Orleans, to St. Louis, Chicago, Louisville, Cincinnati and even Pittsburgh, would be about the same as by rail from New York and imported at New Orleans having no duties to pay, would undersell the East if they had to pay duties. Therefore if the South make good their confederation and their plan, The Northern Confederacy must do likewise or blockade. Then comes the question of foreign nations. So look on it in any view, I see no result but war and consequent change in the form of government. William Tecumseh Sherman in a letter to his brother Senator John Sherman 1861.

"Down here they think they are going to have fine times. New Orleans a free port, whereby she can import Goods without limit or duties, and Sell to the up River Countries. But Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Baltimore will never consent that N. Orleans should be a Free Port, and they Subject to Duties." William T. Sherman

If Amma is right why the Corwin Amendment? Why Lincoln’s repeated denials that he had any intention of threatening slavery? Why wait 2 full years before issuing the Emancipation Proclamation? Finally why did the US Congress also deny that’s what they were fighting over?

“In July 1861, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution, by a nearly unanimous vote, that affirmed that the North was not waging the war to overthrow slavery but to preserve the Union.” (Klingaman, Abraham Lincoln and the Road to Emancipation, pp. 66-70)

Here’s what Lincoln said about it:

"But secession, Lincoln argued, would actually make it harder for the South to preserve slavery. If the Southern states tried to leave the Union, they would lose all their constitutional guarantees, and northerners would no longer be obliged to return fugitive slaves to disloyal owners. In other words, the South was safer inside the Union than without, and to prove his point Lincoln confirmed his willingness to support a recently proposed thirteenth amendment to the Constitution, which would specifically prohibit the federal government from interfering with slavery in states where it already existed." (Klingaman, Abraham Lincoln and the Road to Emancipation, pp. 32-33)

Now either Lincoln did say those things or he did not. Either those various newspapers and political leaders did say those things or they did not. Since we both know they did, does this not raise some doubts in your mind about the version of events that is currently fashionable to argue in Academia? It should if you are honest with yourself. Which is more likely…that this war was fought on behalf of the Northern states over the noble principle of abolishing slavery which they repeatedly denied they were fighting over and which they were prepared to offer permanent constitutional protection for….or were the real reasons for prosecuting the war the same as probably 90% of all wars in history – money and power? Were most Southerners fighting to preserve the institution of slavery (and according to the 1860 US Census only 5.63% of the total free population in the Southern states owned so much as one slave) or were they fighting for what they saw as their economic interests from what Davis described as “the tyranny of an unbridled majority”? The latter seems much more likely to me. After all, that is what their parents and grandparents had seceded from the British Empire over – Money and self determination (power).

Finally you proceed to make more assumptions about where I am from and throw in some silly comments about “southern schools” on the basis of where I happen to be located currently. Silly.

Did you not go to Southern schools?

Dude, go repost at the other thread. It's working now. But think about your arguments. They aren't arguments. They're appeals to authority. Other than when you make shit up. As in, yessir, Lincoln was fighting to preserve the Union. And the South was fighting to preserve slavery against Mr. Lincoln's electorate.

This isn't rocket science.

I can't restate the logic over the Corwin Amendment, but I'll try, because you're slow, and I'm enjoying this in a sad sort of way. (1) In the short term, Lincoln wanted to prevent slavery's expansion, although he regarded it as an abomination. He didn't support trying to attack it directly. The position is the same as mine regarding North Korea. (2) The Corwin Amendment did fuck all to prevent future Congresses from messing with slavery. Can we stop now? Change your opinion, man. It's a good thing.

As for the revenue claims, well, there is this field known as economic history. I am a practioner of it. It does not rely on evidence gathered from partisan newspapers. Here I'll leave the data collection as your chance to move from fake scholarship to real scholarship. It ain't hard.

For the tariff claims, you're being seriously dumb. Like, seriously dumb. Allow me to repeat. Tariffs had declined monotonically from the 1820s. The South had won the battle. No one in the South threatened secession over tariffs or offered to not secede if tariffs were lowered further. So give it up, already.

Lincoln did not support the Fugitive Slave Act, although the Taney Court had done what it did. Weirdly, he didn't want to destroy the country over his disagreement with a horrendous decision. Fancy that.

Finally, note that Amma said the "U.S." C'mon, man. Don't be stupid. And do continue this over at the link. It works.

And you're really not watching the game? That's weird, Mr. Evans. Then again, there are a lot of commercials.

Link for continuing:


Did the south seceded because of slavery... Yes (among many other issues). Did the north go to war to end slavery.... No, Lincoln wanted to preserve the union. I have a masters in history and I'm working on my PHD. I have over 20 booms on the civil war, not one states that the north wanted to end slavery. In fact Lincoln could not care less about slavery. If you want I can list many speeches on Lincoln's view points. People need to stop idolizing the north. Most Yankees hated blacks. They didn't swoop down from the heavens like angels to end slavery. The emancipation proclamation only frees slaves in states that seceded. Not all southern states seceded. Those that did not kept thier slaves... This includes Kentucky, Maryland, Delaware and Missouri. The slaves were set free for military purposes (cannon fodder). Not for some altruistic reason. Sorry to burst bubbles.

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