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Posts Tagged ‘Abraham Lincoln’

Presidents Are at Their Worst In War | The Libertarian Institute

Posted by M. C. on February 2, 2021

Today’s “liberals” aren’t very liberal at all; they see actual liberal principles like due process and respect for the dignity and autonomy of the individual as having been rendered obsolete by faith in science—tendentiously defined—and expertise. Those old liberal principles would just get in the way of the plans of the powerful who sit in the topmost quarters of the state-corporate nexus.

https://libertarianinstitute.org/articles/presidents-are-at-their-worst-in-war/

by David D’Amato

Last week, as he began his administration, President Biden vowed to wage a “full-scale wartime effort” against Covid-19, signing several executive orders, including a new interstate travel mask mandate. That Joe Biden desires to be and sees himself as a wartime president offers hints as to his attitudes about the power of the presidency and government power more generally.

Today’s “liberals” aren’t very liberal at all; they see actual liberal principles like due process and respect for the dignity and autonomy of the individual as having been rendered obsolete by faith in science—tendentiously defined—and expertise. Those old liberal principles would just get in the way of the plans of the powerful who sit in the topmost quarters of the state-corporate nexus. And there’s nothing secret or conspiratorial about this; it plays out in the open, for all to see.

We must ask what a “full-scale wartime effort” might look like as a practical matter; here, history may offer some lessons. During the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln infamously and unilaterally suspended habeas corpus and effectively substituted an arbitrary, dictatorial military government for a constitutional government—even threatening the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court with arrest for opposing Lincoln’s usurpations of both congressional and judicial powers.

World War I witnessed the passage of the Sedition Act of 1918, among American history’s most shameless and egregious assaults on the freedom of speech, under which many opponents of the war were imprisoned for no more than sharing their sincerely-held opinions.

During World War II, the United States government forced over 100,000 people of Japanese ancestry, most of whom were American citizens, into concentration camps. This heinous and racist violation of the most fundamental individual rights was accomplished outside the democratic process, by an order from the desk of President Roosevelt. Roosevelt’s successor distinguished himself by unleashing the terror of two atomic bombs, overseeing the establishment of the CIA, and attempting to seize private property during the Korean War. The mere invocation of wartime, it seems, suffices to immediately supplant the constitutional separation of powers, due process, and individual rights.

The aftermath of the September 11th attacks gave us an almost cartoonishly evil series of lies, civil liberties abuses, and foreign policy crimes completely beyond the reaches of the democratic process—indeed, our elected officials were lied to and spied on with total impunity. American citizens were extrajudicially murdered, the U.S. government maintained programs of torture and indefinite detention, and secret courts allowed extremely opaque national security agencies to spy on citizens. All of this was barely news, the national security and intelligence community being insulated from scrutiny by a media establishment that prefers to host the very worst actors in the above-listed episodes as vaunted guests.

Such policy abominations reflect our leaders’ philosophy of government, under which the individual is a mere subject, her rights entirely dependent on the arbitrary vagaries of a small power elite. This philosophy may be only tacit, learned and absorbed so thoroughly as to make it invisible to the one who holds it and acts on it. America’s political leaders (in both parties, I hasten to add) want to cultivate and create policy in an environment of permanent war and emergency, with citizens in a posture of fear and meek acceptance of “temporary” powers.

The pretext employed to effect such a fear-dominated environment isn’t important to politicians and bureaucrats. It could be the threat of global communism, or Islamic terrorists, or white supremacists, or a novel virus; as long as citizens can be cowed and controlled, the stated reason is only incidentally important. The idea of crisis is what’s ultimately important. This is hardly to argue that the threats to which politicians gesture are imagined or made up out of whole cloth—it is only to say that they are exaggerated and exploited cynically by people with their own designs.

As economic historian Robert Higgs argues, “Without popular fear, no government could endure more than twenty-four hours.” Higgs has long studied the politics of fear and the accretion of new government powers through what he has labeled “the ratchet effect:” these new powers, introduced as temporary and contingent, never actually go away when a crisis recedes, hence the continued ratcheting of state power.

In their book The Power of Bad: How the Negativity Effect Rules Us and How We Can Rule It, John Tierney and Roy F. Baumeister build on Higgs’s work, arguing “that the greatest problem in politics is what we call the Crisis Crisis—the never-ending series of crises, real or imagined, that are hyped by the media and lead to cures too often worse than the disease.”

A wartime president is exactly what we don’t need. We know how that story ends—dissent is branded “sedition” and forbidden, the enemies of tyranny are called “terrorists” and imprisoned indefinitely without due process, citizens are spied on and encouraged to inform against their neighbors, torture and other crimes against humanity become acceptable means, innocent people die needlessly.

Americans need a peacetime president, one who will promote public policies that respect individuals, their freely-made choices, and their property rights, allowing them to run their own lives in peace.

This article was originally featured at the American Institute for Economic Research

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After Lee, It’s Lincoln’s Turn – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on December 18, 2020

Was Lee really the racist and traitor of his haters’ depiction, deserving of the gallows rather than being honored for how he sought to sever the Union? Perhaps the last word should go to a president who still revered Lee as late as 1960, Dwight Eisenhower:

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/12/patrick-j-buchanan/after-lee-its-lincolns-turn/

By Patrick J. Buchanan

First, they came for the Confederates. And that purge is far from over.

Jefferson Davis Highway in Arlington, named for the president of the Confederacy, has been re-christened Richmond Highway.

An Arlington group is calling for the removal of Robert E. Lee’s name from Lee Highway to be replaced by “Mildred & Richard Loving Avenue.” The Lovings were an interracial couple who challenged and helped overturn Virginia’s anti-miscegenation law in the Warren Court.

This month, the statue of Gen. Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson was removed from the campus of Virginia Military Institute, where Jackson taught before leading Confederate troops at the First Battle of Bull Run.

Jackson would die of friendly fire after his victory at Chancellorsville in 1863. Had he been with Lee at Gettysburg, two months later, that most decisive battle of the Civil War might have had a different outcome.

But the cultural-Marxist revolution has moved far beyond Davis, Lee and Jackson. Out west, it is Abraham Lincoln’s turn.

A renaming committee of the San Francisco school district wants the Great Emancipator’s name removed from Lincoln High School for crimes against Native Americans.

Our 16th president ordered the Navajo tribe off their Arizona lands into New Mexico, resulting in a forced march of 450 miles. He approved the hanging of 38 Dakota Indians who had fought in the Dakota War in Minnesota in 1862, the largest mass execution in U.S. history.

Lincoln’s Homestead and Pacific Railway acts led to the loss of large swaths of tribal lands.

Other names to be removed from San Francisco schools include those of George Washington, Herbert Hoover and Sen. Dianne Feinstein. In 1984, Mayor Feinstein allowed a Confederate Battle Flag to be flown at City Hall.

As one looks down the list of greats whose statues are to be pulled down and names removed from public buildings, there seems to be a single common great sin for which none can be forgiven.

The unpardonable heresy? Columbus, Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Jackson, Polk, Lee, Teddy Roosevelt, Wilson and Lincoln disbelieved in the equality of all races, peoples, cultures and civilizations. And these men lived and acted in conformity with this disbelief.

Lincoln detested slavery but did not believe in social and political equality between the races. As he conceded to Stephen Douglas in one of their 1858 debates, “We cannot, then, make them equal.”

Still, between 1789 and 1960, a republic led by those men, who preached but did not practice equality, built the greatest nation in history.

Ever victorious in war, with the mightiest manufacturing base and the highest standard of living on earth, America was by the day of JFK the envy of mankind.

Yet, since Jamestown in 1607, we had been governed by men who disbelieved in equality and disregarded the suggestion that, “All men are created equal.”

That proposition first appeared in a Declaration of Independence written by a member of Virginia’s landed aristocracy who owned scores of slaves and described the Indians against whom we fought as “merciless savages” in that same document signed on July 4, 1776.

For Lee, the dishonors do not stop. A Virginia history commission just voted to replace the general’s statue in the U.S. Capitol with a statue of Barbara Rose Johns, a teenager who, in 1951, led a strike at her high school to demand the same benefits white kids were receiving.

Was Lee really the racist and traitor of his haters’ depiction, deserving of the gallows rather than being honored for how he sought to sever the Union? Perhaps the last word should go to a president who still revered Lee as late as 1960, Dwight Eisenhower:

“General Robert E. Lee was… one of the supremely gifted men produced by our Nation. He believed unswervingly in the Constitutional validity of his cause which until 1865 was still an arguable question in America; he was a poised and inspiring leader, true to the high trust reposed in him by millions of his fellow citizens; he was thoughtful yet demanding of his officers and men, forbearing with captured enemies but ingenious, unrelenting and personally courageous in battle, and never disheartened by a reverse or obstacle. Through all his many trials, he remained selfless almost to a fault and unfailing in his faith in God. Taken altogether, he was noble as a leader and as a man, and unsullied as I read the pages of our history.

“From deep conviction, I simply say this: a nation of men of Lee’s calibre would be unconquerable in spirit and soul. Indeed, to the degree that present-day American youth will strive to emulate his rare qualities, including his devotion to this land as revealed in his painstaking efforts to help heal the Nation’s wounds once the bitter struggle was over, we, in our own time of danger in a divided world, will be strengthened and our love of freedom sustained.

“Such are the reasons that I proudly display the picture of this great American on my office wall.”

The Best of Patrick J. Buchanan Patrick J. Buchanan is co-founder and editor of The American Conservative. He is also the author of Where the Right Went Wrong, and Churchill, Hitler, and the Unnecessary War. His latest book is Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever See his website.

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Why the Marxist Left Loves Lincoln – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on July 13, 2020

It is little wonder that the ideas promulgated by the New York Tribune, the mouthpiece of the Republican Party, were overtly socialist:  Karl Marx himself was a twice-weekly columnist for the paper from 1852 to 1862, contributing over 500 articles. 

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/07/thomas-dilorenzo/why-the-marxist-left-loves-lincoln/

By

“No leader of a powerful nation” should allow such a thing as “the dismemberment of the Soviet Union.”

–Marxist “Civil War” historian Eric Foner, The Nation, Feb. 11, 1991

A July 27, 2019 article in the Washington Post by Gillian Brockell was headlined, “You Know Who Was into Karl Marx?  No, not AOC.  Abraham Lincoln.”  Following up on the New York Times’ 2017 weeks-long celebration of the centenary of the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia, the Post was doing its part to celebrate and promote Marxian socialism by crowing that “the first Republican president . . . was surrounded by socialists and looked to them for counsel.”  The message being conveyed by the Post was that this is what all American presidents should do.  They should listen to and obey the Washington Post, in other words.

Much of Lincoln’s socialilstic “counsel” came from Horace Greeley’s New York Tribune, described by the Post as “the newspaper largely responsible for transmitting the ideals and ideas that formed the Republican Party in 1854,” many of which were “overtly socialist.”

It is little wonder that the ideas promulgated by the New York Tribune, the mouthpiece of the Republican Party, were overtly socialist:  Karl Marx himself was a twice-weekly columnist for the paper from 1852 to 1862, contributing over 500 articles.  An April 1957 article in American Heritage magazine entitled “When Marx Worked for Horace Greeley” spoke of how “the organ of . . . the new Republican party, sustained Karl Marx over the years when he was mapping out his crowning tract of overthrow, Das Kapital . . . The Tribune was not only Marx’s meal ticket but his experimental outlet for agitation and ideas during the most creative period of his life.”  Without this financial support, “there might possibly – who knows?—have been no Das Kapital” and maybe even no “Lenin and a Stalin as the master’s disciples . . .”   Much of what was written in The New York Tribune by Karl Marx “went bodily into Das Kapital.”

Lincoln was an avid reader of the Tribune since it was “the” voice first of “respectable Whig opinion” and then of the Republican Party.  He addressed his letters to Greeley as “Dear Friend Greeley.”  Lincoln and Karl Marx personally communicated as well and had a sort of mutual admiration society.  Upon being reelected, Lincoln received a letter from Marx saying, “We congratulate the American people upon your reelection by a large majority.”  Lincoln responded with a thank-you letter.  The Washington Post, meanwhile sounded absolutely giddy in noting that “Once in office, [Lincoln’s] alliance with socialists didn’t stop.”  That “alliance” was not only political or literary:  Lincoln’s army was filled with so-called “48ers,” German immigrants to America who had participated in failed socialist revolutions in Europe in 1848, the year of publication of The Communist Manifesto by Marx and Engels (See Lincoln’s Marxists by Al Benson, Jr. and Walter Kennedy).  The Post brings all of this up in order to make the point that, despite President Trump’s occasional references to Abraham Lincoln in support of his populist agenda, the most appropriate use of the Lincoln myth would be to promote their crusade for socialism in America.

There is nothing new about this. At their 1939 national convention the American Communist Party adorned its stage with a gigantic image of Abraham Lincoln alongside a large image of Vladimir Lenin and held Lincoln-Lenin Day rallies in New York City.

In other words, far from defacing the Lincoln Memorial or other Zeus-like images of Lincoln around the country, the radical, violent, and often criminal communists of Antifa and Only Black Lives Matter (“We are trained Marxists,” one of the founders of OBLM has said) are more likely to continue using the image, words, and deeds of Lincoln to assist in their crusade to destroy American civilization and replace it with another communist hell.  If they ever get control of the government it is not beyond the imagination that they would follow Lincoln’s footsteps and suspend habeas corpus, mass arrest and imprison dissenters, censor communications, shut down conservative newspapers, withdraw licenses from conservative talk radio and television stations, deport or imprison some opposition members of Congress to send a message to all the rest, abolish the separation of powers, confiscate firearms, and use the military to wage total war on the civilian population of areas of the country where “deplorable” political dissent is strongest.

Dr. Thomas DiLorenzo [send him mail] is a senior fellow of the Ludwig von Mises Institute. His latest book is The Problem with Lincoln.

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The Unholy Trinity and the Total State – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on April 8, 2020

Thus, we must remember that ideas can have powerful consequences and that liberty must be defended with vigilance.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/04/derek-dobalian/the-unholy-trinity-and-the-total-state/

By

The seeds of the Total State were planted by three men in the 19th century. These three men had delusions of grandeur and believed they had the answers to all of mankind’s troubles and questions. They placed themselves above God. The seeds they planted quickly grew roots and sprouted into the Total States of the 20th century. These three men were Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, and Abraham Lincoln. The ideologies and actions of these men complimented each other and ultimately led to a level of death and destruction the world had never seen before.

Charles Darwin and Karl Marx

In 1859, Darwin released “On the Origins of Species by Means of Natural Selection, of the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life,” in which he invented the theory of natural selection. A decade prior to this Karl Marx published “The Communist Manifesto,” which advocated for an authoritarian collectivist society that would abolish individual liberty. This manifesto was so influential that almost every major society put some form of it in place in the 20th century, whether it was a watered-down form of socialism or full-on communism. But this influence was only made possible because of Darwin and his theories. Darwin’s theory of evolution and natural selection discarded God and consequently the idea of objective morality and the inherent worth of every individual. It was Marx himself who said “Darwin’s work is most important and suits my purpose in that it provides a basis in natural science for the historical class struggle.” By destroying the idea that God created us all and granted us natural rights, Darwin gave Marx’s theory a much-needed foundation. This allowed for Marx’s theory to spread, as people began to accept that individuals did not have rights and therefore, that “society” had the right to enforce its will on individuals. After all, if Darwin’s theory is true, then there is no purpose in life and we are all here by chance. And if this is true, then there is no such thing as right and wrong. This thinking, combined with Marx’s idea of a collectivist society centered around an all-powerful state allowed for the creation of the Total State in the next century. Hitler, who was an avowed socialist, stated that “the earth has been acquired on the basis of the right of the stronger.” The German dictator, along with the other leaders of the 20th century Total States, adopted Marx’s theories and Darwin’s “survival of the fittest” concept, thus leading to an all-powerful state deciding who the most “fit” were and who could and should be sacrificed and destroyed.

Abraham Lincoln

If Darwin and Marx were the originators of the Total State throughout the world, Abraham Lincoln fulfilled that role more specifically in the United States and, more importantly, was the initiator of the horrific Total Warfare tactics they would eventually use. In regards to being a forerunner of the Total State, Lincoln not only wrote about it but actually put it into place. Lincoln argued that states had no right to secede and therefore that the national government had the authority to quash any such attempt with the use of overwhelming force. The results of this were obvious: the consolidation of power into one solitary group, the defining feature of the Total States of the 20th century. This centralization of power by Lincoln was later praised by Hitler in “Mein Kampf.” Hitler later would echo Lincoln, promising Germany that he “would totally eliminate states’ rights altogether.” Thus, we see that Lincoln’s vision laid the groundwork for the Total State. But that is not all. He also created the precedent for the Total War tactics that the vicious states of the 20th century would later employ. President Lincoln waged “total war” on the South, laying waste to its land and killing civilians, including children. As Murray Rothbard stated, he “broke the 19th-century rules of war by specifically plundering and slaughtering civilians, by destroying civilian life and institutions.” In fact, Rothbard declares, “by targeting and butchering civilians, Lincoln…paved the way for all the genocidal horrors of the monstrous 20th century.” The Total States’ later use of these tactics, which were unprecedented in Lincoln’s time, would make the 20th century the bloodiest one in history.

Conclusion

The terror of the 20th century did not occur by chance. It was largely the result of the horrific ideologies and actions of three men who lived in the previous century. Thus, we must remember that ideas can have powerful consequences and that liberty must be defended with vigilance.

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My Corner by Boyd Cathey-Karl MARX’s Influence on Abraham LINCOLN

Posted by M. C. on March 9, 2020

https://boydcatheyreviewofbooks.blogspot.com/

by Boyd Cathey

Friends,

These columns don’t often cite The Washington Post; however, last summer I ran across an article that I saved for future reference and use. And today I will reproduce it.

For the past century and more there has been lively discussion—and debate—over Abraham Lincoln, his life, his views, and the legacy of his presidency left to us. Writers as diverse as historian David Donald, black writer Lerone Bennett, and Professor Thomas di Lorenzo (in two significant books), have attempted to dissect Lincoln’s life and the revolutionary “new” America he gave birth to. Most recently those Neoconservatives—those “establishment” conservatives whose “conservatism” is actually rooted in a variant of Marxism—have claimed Father Abe for their own, denouncing any and all traditional conservatives or Southern writers who might criticize him or dissent from their virtual canonization of the rail-splitter.

Only consider the watershed “case” of the late Dr. Mel Bradford, the distinguished Southern scholar and writer, who was considered back in 1981 by President Reagan as his appointee to head the National Endowment for the Humanities. Backed by Senators Jesse Helms and John East of North Carolina, and by Democrat Senator Howell Heflin of Alabama, Bradford was viciously attacked by Neocon journalist George Will and other Neocon publicists such as Bill Kristol. In the end Reagan appointed Neocon-favored Democrat William Bennett.

Bradford’s major “crime”?  He had engaged in a long-running, scholarly debate with Dr. Harry Jaffa (Claremont College, California), very critical of Lincoln’s deleterious influence on America. (There is an excellent and full discussion of this extremely significant episode by Scott Trask and Paul Gottfried in the February 2020 issue of CHRONICLES magazine. I highly recommend subscribing to this journal which is by far the best print magazine of opinion, history and culture published in the United States.)

Like Martin Luther King Jr., Lincoln has been boosted to ethereal heights in American history and politics. Despite the ongoing discussion, his virtual triumph as a demi-god and the Founder of a New America who actually implemented the promises of the Declaration of Independence, demonstrate the triumph of one of the most fraudulent and perverse charades in our history.

The article first published in the Post last year raises important questions, but unfortunately those questions will not be seriously considered by Neocon ideologues like historically-challenged Dinesh D’Souza or Ben Shapiro or Jonah Goldberg, who remain mired in what is essentially a Leftwing bog contaminated at its very base by a whole series of progressivist positions and assumptions about civil rights and globalism….

You know who was into Karl Marx? No, not AOC. Abraham Lincoln.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2019/07/27/you-know-who-was-into-karl-marx-no-not-aoc-abraham-lincoln/?outputType=amp

The two men were friendly and influenced each other

By Gillian Brockell

July 27, 2019 at 7:00 AM EDT

It was December 1861, a Tuesday at noon, when President Abraham Lincoln sent his first annual message ⁠ — what later became the State of the Union ⁠— to the House and Senate. By the next day, all 7,000 words of the manuscript were published in newspapers across the country, including the Confederate South. This was Lincoln’s first chance to speak to the nation at length since his inaugural address. He railed against the “disloyal citizens” rebelling against the Union, touted the strength of the Army and Navy, and updated Congress on the budget.

For his eloquent closer, he chose not a soliloquy on unity or freedom but an 800-word meditation on what the Chicago Tribune subtitled “Capital Versus Labor:” “Labor is prior to and independent of capital,” the country’s 16th president said. “Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.”

If you think that sounds like something Karl Marx would write, well, that might be because Lincoln was regularly reading Karl Marx.

President Trump has added a new arrow in his quiver of attacks as of late, charging that a vote for “any Democrat” in the next election “is a vote for the rise of radical socialism” and that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and other congresswomen of color are “a bunch of communists.” Yet the first Republican president, for whom Trump has expressed admiration, was surrounded by socialists and looked to them for counsel.

Of course, Lincoln was not a socialist, nor communist nor Marxist, just as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) aren’t. (Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) identify as “democratic socialists.”) But Lincoln and Marx ⁠— born only nine years apart ⁠— were contemporaries. They had many mutual friends, read each other’s work and, in 1865, exchanged letters.

When Lincoln served his sole term in Congress in the late 1840s, the young lawyer from Illinois became close friends with Horace Greeley, a fellow Whig who served briefly alongside him. Greeley was better known as the founder of the New York Tribune, the newspaper largely responsible for transmitting the ideals and ideas that formed the Republican Party in 1854.

And what were those ideals and ideas? They were anti-slavery, pro-worker and sometimes overtly socialist, according to John Nichols, author of the book “The ‘S’ Word: A Short History of an American Tradition … Socialism.” The New York Tribune championed the redistribution of land in the American West to the poor and the emancipation of slaves.

“Greeley welcomed the disapproval of those who championed free markets over the interests of the working class, a class he recognized as including both the oppressed slaves of the south and the degraded industrial laborers of the north,” Nichols writes.

Across the Atlantic, another man linked the fates of enslaved and wage workers: Marx. Upon publishing “The Communist Manifesto” with Friedrich Engels in 1848, the German philosopher sought refuge in London after a failed uprising in what was then the German Confederation. Hundreds of thousands of German radicals immigrated to the United States in this same period, filling industrial jobs in the North and joining anti-slavery groups. Marx had once considered “going West” himself, to Texas, according to historian Robin Blackburn in his book “An Unfinished Revolution: Karl Marx and Abraham Lincoln.”

Marx was intensely interested in the plight of American slaves. In January 1860, he told Engels that the two biggest things happening in the world were “on the one hand the movement of the slaves in America started by the death of John Brown, and on the other the movement of the serfs in Russia.”

He equated Southern slaveholders with European aristocrats, Blackburn writes, and thought ending chattel slavery “would not destroy capitalism, but it would create conditions far more favorable to organizing and elevating labor, whether white or black.”

Marx was also friends with Charles A. Dana, an American socialist fluent in German who was the managing editor of the New York Tribune. In 1852, Dana hired Marx to be the newspaper’s British correspondent.

Over the next decade, Marx wrote nearly 500 articles for the paper. Many of his contributions became unsigned columns appearing on the front page as the publication’s official position. Marx later “borrowed liberally” from his New York Tribune writings for his book “Capital,” according to Nichols.

Like a lot of nascent Republicans, Lincoln was an “avid reader” of the Tribune. It’s nearly guaranteed that, in the 1850s, Lincoln was regularly reading Marx.

In 1860, two major factors helped to propel Lincoln — a one-term congressman and country lawyer most known for losing a Senate campaign — to the Republican nomination for the presidency. First, the support of former German revolutionaries who had become key players in the Republican Party; and second, the support of the party’s newspaper, the Tribune.

Once Lincoln took office, his alliance with socialists didn’t stop. Dana left the Tribune to become Lincoln’s eyes and ears in the War Department, following along with troop movements and telling Lincoln what he thought of his generals. A soldier working in the telegraph office later wrote that “Lincoln waited eagerly” for “Dana’s long d[i]spatches.”

And Greeley continued to urge Lincoln to take a harder line against slavery, to make the Civil War not just about preserving the union but about abolition. Marx did the same in the pages of the Tribune.

In 1863, they got what they wanted when Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation.

In January 1865, Marx wrote to Lincoln on behalf of the International Workingmen’s Association, a group for socialists, communists, anarchists and trade unions, to “congratulate the American people upon your reelection.”

He said “an oligarchy of 300,000 slaveholders” had defiled the republic and that “the workingmen of Europe feel sure that, as the American War of Independence initiated a new era of ascendancy for the middle class, so the American Antislavery War will do for the working class.”

A few weeks later, a reply came via Charles Francis Adams — son of former president John Quincy Adams, grandson of former president John Adams and U.S. ambassador to Britain under Lincoln.

He told Marx that Lincoln had received his message, and it was “accepted by him with a sincere and anxious desire that he may be able to prove himself not unworthy of the confidence which has been recently extended to him by his fellow citizens and by so many of the friends of humanity and progress throughout the world.” Notably, Adams indicated Lincoln considered Marx and company “friends.”

He went on to say that the Union “derive[s] new encouragement to persevere from the testimony of the workingmen of Europe.”

Both letters ran in newspapers across Britain and the United States. Marx was delighted, telling Engels it created “such a sensation” that the “bourgeoisie” in private clubs were “shaking their heads at it.”

Lincoln also met with the New York chapter of the Workingmen’s Association, telling its members in 1864: “The strongest bond of human sympathy, outside of the family relation, should be one uniting all working people, of all nations, and tongues, and kindreds.” Which is perhaps a more eloquent rendering of Marx’s famous rallying cry: “Workers of the world unite!”

Lincoln never took up the mantle of socialism. He believed in the system of wage labor even as he proposed reforms to it; Marx rejected it as another form of slavery. But Lincoln certainly viewed socialists as allies, and Nichols writes, “It is indisputable that the Republican Party had at its founding a red streak.”

Though this fact may be little known now, it hasn’t been a secret to other figures in American history. When the socialist orator and frequent presidential candidate Eugene V. Debs made a campaign stop in Springfield, Ill., in 1908, he told the crowd, “The Republican Party was once red. Lincoln was a revolutionary.”

It was also noted by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. In February 1968, at a celebration of the life of W.E.B. Du Bois at Carnegie Hall, King brought up that the co-founder of the NAACP became a communist in his later years. “It is worth noting,” King said, “that Abraham Lincoln warmly welcomed the support of Karl Marx during the Civil War and corresponded with him freely. … Our irrational obsessive anti-communism has led us into too many quagmires to be retained as if it were a mode of scientific thinking.”

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Progressivism-Know Thine Enemy

Posted by M. C. on January 3, 2016

Progressivism stands for the proposition that freedom , liberty, voluntary cooperation, and the free market are not enough. To best improve life, the state must intervene with men and women carrying guns and willing to use them against resistance and break up those voluntary relations and impose its will by brute force to achieve different and presumably better results. At the bottom of progressivism is a quasi-religious belief in state action (force) over individual choice.

This is the definition of Progressivism as defined in James Ostrowski’s book on the greatest threat to liberty this country has seen. Progressivism -A Primer on the Idea Destroying America.

Ostrowski defines and describes Progressvisim, its failures and how neoconservatives have grown to employ its precepts.

“Progressivism -A Primer on the Idea Destroying America” is a great starting point for anyone new to and wanting to learn about Progressive philosophy. Read the rest of this entry »

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