…..Disturbingly, the man who warned of an American Napoleon became the American Napoleon.
Which brings me to a personal confession: Joe Sobran has softened my thinking on Lincoln. When I came to study the Civil War, and study it in-depth, over eight years, it occurred to me that, truly, the conflict is more properly named the War for Southern Independence.
The Northern view of the war which I had been spoon-fed in school parrots the earlier English view of the colonial (American) War of Independence — right down to laughing at the notion that the relevant rebels could possibly claim to be fighting for freedom, merely because of the issue of slavery. By the way, the English figured things out the second time around — and rooted for the Confederacy. In that regard, see Sheldon Vanauken‘s The Glittering Illusion.
This Anglo-Northern myth is exactly that — a myth. Because it is false at worst, biased and incomplete at best, the telling and perpetuation of this counterfeit tale merits correction. In short, this descendent of a Federal army soldier was enraged to find injustice hiding behind a veil of justice. Sobran, however, has a point in arguing that, rather than see Lincoln merely as a villain, it may be appropriate to view Lincoln as a tragic, Oxfordian (you might say Shakespearean) figure.
But back to Hummel’s essential point: the war against the Confederacy fundamentally changed the USA. The prosecution of the war turned the USA from an unobtrusive, small government into an intrusive, bloated monstrosity. When the USA forcibly re-absorbed the CSA, this “wonderful” system — now beyond reproach to “neo”-conservatives (maybe “conservatives” should be in quotation marks, rather than the neo) — became not only mandatory, but, according to the Northern theory still dominant today — inescapable.
No part of the USA can ever leave…..
via Utopia? Hardly.