Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Refighting The Civil War

What, the piles of bodies were not high enough from the first go-'round? It's over. Slavery lost, which is good, though the end of that was inevitable; the relationship between the States and the Federal government was forever changed and that was bad (and also probably inevitable).

Also inevitable? Political arguments. But the longer they run, the less sense they make and if it gets nonsensical enough, Mama's gonna pull the plug. Okay?


Tam said...

Understand this:

When George Washington put on his white suit and string tie and said "I say, I say, let's cross this river and kill us some German-speaking conscripts," it was a good thing, but when Marse Bob did the same thing, it was a bad thing. Capiche?

Ken said...

Depends on which river, dunnit? The Rapidan or the James, I'll grant. Some river in Pennsyltucky (too lazy to grab a map)...maybe not so much.

Tam said...

Hey, Teddy Roosevelt had no problem saluting Fightin' Joe, so I don't see what some of these other commenters problem is.

WV: "bonnest". Bonn. Bonner. Bonnest.

Ken said...

I had to go see which "Fightin' Joe" to which you was referrin' (though for the life of me I couldn't figure out why the less bad Roosevelt would feel the need to salute Joe Hooker). :-)

I am partial to Longstreet, myself. Apropos of not much, I'm about 230 pages into that JFC Fuller book on Grant I mentioned before. I recommend it. Fuller is particularly tough on the generalship in the Great War as having learned nothing from the American Civil War.

Stranger said...

While it would take a book to cover the subject, google "tariff of abominations." That tax made hardly a blip on the economy of the industrialized North - and nearly ruined the agricultural South.

When it was reinstated, the South reacted angrily. Lincoln offered the South slavery in perpetuity, in return for paying the tariff. In that, Lincoln badly misjudged the South.

What was at stake? For the North, the status quo, with continuing high profits from the slave trade and a protected industrial base.

For the South, plans to industrialize itself and remove the further threat of destructive tariffs.

And to have some satisfactory outcome for the masses of largely unskilled field workers who had become more a symbol of conspicuous consumption than any economic advantage.

As with almost all wars, the basis of the "War of Southern Secession" was economic, wrapped in robes of idealism.

And, since the descendants of those who profited from the War still regard honoring those who fought for the South as open insurrection, I suppose we will have to listen to the cannons for yet another century and a half.


Crucis said...

Tam, that wuz because Marse Robert wasn't wearing white---he wore gray.

Truly, it makes all the difference. Right? Right?


Anonymous said...

RX, though Tam has probably wearied of my cajoling, it does seem that the bad blood that you have warned against figuratively spilling here under threat of pulling the plug could be educationally and entertainingly stanched with the application of her unique narrative style to a before/during/after trilogy addressing this most uncivil chapter in our history.

With the stunning ignorance and arrogance literally at her arms length but so widely shared/believed, and the anniversaries of beginning and end upon us, could the timing really be better?

Of course we all have our partisan beliefs and vested historical interests, but as to how a factual synopsis might find? I think Stranger is mighty close; as with so many conflicts with hidden agendas and fervent disinformation, the truth is simpler, even almost banal.


Al Terego

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Reinstate the Tariff of Abomination? Lincoln offered slavery in perpetuity for bringing that back? When did Lincoln make this offer? When he was a lowly one term member of the house 15 years after the tariff was gone, or during the 2 dozen some odd days he was president before the shootin' war started and the tariff was 30 years dead? Or am I confused about something?

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

Like NJT, and as a student of the period, I find myself quite confused about this alleged Lincoln offer in re: the Tariff of Abomination. It appears that the 1828 tariff was not in play at all, but rather, you seem to be referring to the Morrill tariff of 1861, which wasn't enacted till March 2, 1861 when it was signed by then-President Buchanan -- in other words, before Lincoln's inauguration and after the Southern states had started to secede.

If you're talking about this guy, I think he has a vested interest in blowing that particular horn -- particularly since it seems to be key to the thesis of the book he's flogging -- and in my study of the war and what led up to it, I don't believe I have ever seen this particular hypothesis advanced by anyone else.

So, please cite your sources. (Wikipedia does not count as a source.)

Ken said...

On another tangent, if I can find time to paint some more of my pile of 15mm figures, I (and a few friends) will refight Iuka and/or Corinth this fall.

In the mean time, I see that I have got Battleline's Fury in the West on my shelf.