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« Civil War plus 150 years - Fort Sumter | Main | CBO: GOP’s $38.50 billion spending cut really cut only $0.35 billion »

April 12, 2011



Hmm. The US Civil War was as much about slavery as the Iraq war was about oil. Haven't you read enough about that era to know this by now?

Frank Warner

Kevin, read more. Read the newspapers of the time. The Civil War was 99 percent over slavery. States rights are in there, but it was 99 percent over the states' "rights" to allow slavery.


I don't have any newspapers from the time :(. But I know that the 'journalism' of the time was extremely yellow, even more than it is now. And if you were to go by only the newspapers of OUR time, then you'd learn that the Iraq war WAS about oil, and that Abu Ghraib was the worst thing that had ever happened in the history of the planet. Newspapers are a very poor reference.

Think about it. Somewhere around 98% of southerners had no slaves. Did they choose war to protect those 2% of slaveowners? I doubt it.

Also remember that Lincoln passed no law outlawing slavery until long after the war had begun. Why would someone go to war over slavery before slavery was threatened?

Frank Warner

The Southern states seceded because they knew Lincoln was going to make slavery difficult. And even the Democrats, North and South, who didn't have slaves opposed Lincoln because they "suspected" Lincoln thought blacks were equal to whites.

During the Iraq war, the Democrat-leaning news media (yes, almost all of the media, that is) implied the liberation of Iraq had something to do with trying to steal Iraq's oil. They did everything they could to drown out what Operation Iraqi Freedom was all about.

During the Civil War, however, the Democratic-leaning newspapers didn't even try to pretend slavery wasn't the central controversy. They regularly published their complaint that Lincoln was intent on freeing the slaves. That WAS the reason for the war.


OR... You could say these things:(Frank Warner said this)

"They did everything they could to drown out what Operation Iraqi Freedom was all about."

and (this one's edited from Frank's original)
"During the Civil War, the Democratic-leaning newspapers tried to pretend slavery was the central controversy to drown out what the war was all about."

I have to disagree with you. The civil war was not about freedom of slaves. But it certainly was about freedom. Freedom lost :(. So many states destroyed for so long that they're only becoming fully restored now. So much authoritarian rule for so long. So much wealth-robbing bureaucracy as a result of that one stupid war.

It was good that such a horrible thing as slavery ended, but the cost might have been greater than the benefit. Slavery was on it's way out no matter what. Even the southern Generals were against it. There was no need to have so many people die and so much prosperity destroyed.

I hate to support anything the Democrats have ever done, but to be fair to them, they really only started being lame when Woodrow Wilson became president.

jj mollo

The meme-world of the South was completely driven by the economic interests of the planter elites. People who had no slaves had to salute these elites, had to recognize their power and conform to their ideas. Even the southern churches conformed to the extent of providing theological apologies for slavery. The planters of antebellum South were totally wedded to the status quo, maintaining an antiquated economic system for decades beyond the general welfare of the southern people as a whole.

It is true that the North and the nation as a whole were subject, especially later, to an economic tyranny of monopolistic industrial despots and their hangers-on, but the Southern system was far less open, with much less upward mobility. It was an oligarchy, and poor southern whites were kept loyal to the system through disinformation and domination of the reins of power by the elite, and the South ruled the country through the Democratic Party. When that power began to slip, when the real possibility of limited emancipation started to seem conceivable, then war was inevitable. The North was resentful that they had accepted the Southern ascendancy for so long, but now that the tables were turned the South was going to secede. But the real issue was slavery. There is little doubt about that anywhere but in the South, where remnants of a nostalgic meme-construct still rule.

jj mollo

I think it is misleading to compare the current party alignments to those which were in place at the time of the Civil War. The Republicans at the time were in favor of emancipation, expansion of civil liberties, and heavy investment in the general welfare for the purpose of economic development. The Democrats were in favor of drastically reducing the power of the federal government and allowing states to determine how to treat their subjects. Positions today are almost completely reversed.

The mantra of States Rights was IMO a complete dodge designed to protect the institution of slavery and the status quo that the planters favored.


"The Republicans at the time were in favor of emancipation, expansion of civil liberties, and heavy investment in the general welfare for the purpose of economic development."

The part in bold is completely incorrect. They were for emancipation of slaves, and freedom in general. You know, for everyone. AND WE STILL ARE, 150 years later. "To each, according to his effort." That's what freedom means.

jj mollo

The Republicans supported construction of roads, railroads, canals and industrial infrastructure. They were in favor of a national bank. The Republican governments in the South raised taxes to pay for reconstruction efforts. They also protected black people from intimidation and ensured the black voting rights. The Republicans established and maintained the Freedman's Bureau, which was by modern standards a form of social welfare. The Democrats wanted none of that. When they got the power back, all of those things were ended.

jj mollo

FDR turned the Democrats around economically and Truman and LBJ turned them around on Civil Rights.


You know, the more that I think about it, the more I dislike Lincoln. Leave slavery to the side for the moment, because that was not the gist of the war, at least not until the end when he needed to garner support.

Some states said, "We don't support you. We don't like you. We're leaving your union." And Lincoln said, "No, you can't leave. I command it at the tip of a gun." What kind of ass would force people who don't want to follow him, to follow him? I can only think of one such ass. A king.

F#%K YOU, Lincoln, you king wannabe.

I know what you're thinking. "What about the poor black people?" Do you REALLY think that if he let the South go free, that there would be slavery in the South today? No, of course not. It would have just taken a few more years. 15, max. The cotton gin had been created. And the transition MIGHT have been much smoother.

But no. Instead, Lincoln destroyed the South, which took ~80 years to recover. What a dick.


The lack of comment leads me to believe that I am absolutely correct. I was pretty sure of it anyway.


Yup, I'm right.


Holy Moly! Score two for Kevin. Nature sucks, and Lincoln sucks. Never has New Jersey beaten Pennsylvania so horribly. It's a bloodbath, Frank!

Note: Frank's page is a discussion, not a game. (If it WAS a game, I'd be winning though... rather massively, with my nature and lincoln suck dual slogan)

Enough of that. Let's all just agree on things we can agree upon. Like nature and Lincoln totally suck. Who's with me?


*tap* *tap* Is this thing on?


Kevin writes: "The US Civil War was as much about slavery as the Iraq war was about oil. Haven't you read enough about that era to know this by now?"

Kevin, you can start with reading the Cornerstone speech, by Vice President of the Confederacy, Alexander Stephens.

"Our new Government is founded upon exactly the opposite ideas; its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery, subordination to the superior race, is his natural and normal condition."

Official state secession documents, one after another, cite the threat to the institution of slavery as the reason for secession.

And learn to use Google News Archives to read what was written in the day. The yellow journalism defense is a convenient way for you to ignore what SOUTHERN newspapers were writing. These papers were pro-secession and the reason they were pro-secession was the threat to the institution of slavery. They made no bones about it.

Shame on Southerners who have constructed the Southern myth about the causes of the civil war. No respectable historian or self-respecting Southern buys that self-serving nonsense. Thyey're like today's Japanese, trying to put a pretty face on their ignoble cause in WWII.


Yeah, we now know what these "respectable historians" have been foisting on the public over decades about Woodrow Wilson.

I actually believed he was a great president up until the last couple of years where the truth is finally being told by those who have researched and not considered part of those "respectable historians".

So please don't use that "respectable historians" BS to make an argument. The American public not only has been lied to day after day by the government and the legacy media but the liberal historians have managed to institutionalize their lies as mainstream common knowledge in our childrens' schools.

They are as much a disgrace as this goofy ass man we are stuck with in the White House. What a crock.

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