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by Michael Gaddy, ©2016, blogging at The Rebel Madman

Horace Greeley founded the New York Tribune and was a supporter of Lincoln in 1860, then ran unsuccessfully himself for president in 1872

(Apr. 21, 2016) — One would be hard pressed to disagree with the fact the Declaration of Independence not only defines the beginnings of our country but could be called our founding charter. Thomas Jefferson most eloquently laid out the tenets of lawful separation from a tyrannical oppressor, but also the definition of the one thing which defines the difference between ownership by the people of their government or the ownership of the people by a government: the basic tenet of “consent of the governed.”

It is both an indictment and a conviction of the Public Fool System and the institutionalized ignorance of the vast majority of citizens in this country that a government which operates without their consent is not only tyrannical and oppressive but such a government renders the people political slaves to their government’s edicts, rulings, and laws. Believing an elected representative who does not strictly adhere to a sacred oath to the Constitution is a lawful “representative” of their vested interests is insanity perfectly defined. Any elected representative who votes or acts unconstitutionally is a criminal and should be treated as such.

Recently, I received a comment on my article “It’s Not Your Flag” in which the person making the comment indicated all soldiers who fought for the Confederacy, whether they owned slaves or not, were by proxy fighting for slavery, while the soldiers of the North were fighting to preserve the Union. This person perfectly articulated the common belief of many, yet he was oblivious to the fact his contention was contrary to the tenets of the Declaration of Independence, in particular, the concept of “consent of the governed.”

Forgotten by the historically challenged, the politically correct, driven by crippling emotionalism, and government idolaters is the simple fact that prior to the ratification of the 13th Amendment in December of 1865, slavery and indentured servitude were legal throughout this country. The fact some states, mostly those whose climate did not support large agricultural enterprises such as seen in the South, had outlawed slavery is a perfect example of the principles of the Tenth Amendment as exercised. Also, the fact the Fugitive Slave Laws were ignored in many of those states is a great example of the theory of Nullification, which we are told today does not exist when it comes to other unconstitutional laws enforced by our current government.

Yes, even though slavery was legal until December of 1865, it was totally immoral and a crime against nature, but then so was murdering LaVoy Finicum with his hands up on the side of the road in Oregon and arresting and holding without bond those who claim constitutional rights such as the Bundys, and political prisoners such as the Hammonds. In reality, who enjoys more freedoms:  the Hammonds and Bundys who are simply political prisoners, or those who worked the cotton fields of the South prior to 1865?

On April 15th, 1865, when Lincoln ordered up 75,000 troops to “put down the rebellion” in the seven southern states which had seceded, there were more slaves in states that were still in the union than there were in the seven states that had seceded at the time. So, if it was true that the soldiers of the Confederacy were fighting to preserve the institution of slavery, they supported Lincoln and his policies just as much as they supported Jefferson Davis.

In his First Inaugural address Lincoln stated:

“I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.”

He also stated his support for enforcement of the Fugitive Slave Laws which required any escaped slave “shall be delivered up.”

Lincoln spoke of the Corwin Amendment which had passed both houses of Congress and was being sent to the states for ratification. Lincoln prevaricated that he had not seen the amendment but in fact, he was the primary source and avid supporter of the amendment.*

“I understand a proposed amendment to the Constitution–which amendment, however, I have not seen–has passed Congress, to the effect that the Federal Government shall never interfere with the domestic institutions of the States, including that of persons held to service.”

Here is the wording of the Corwin Amendment:

“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.”

The wording of this amendment states unequivocally that “no amendment” could be made to the Constitution which would outlaw slavery. Slavery would have remained in perpetuity under Lincoln’s guidance if the seven states of the Deep South would have agreed to stay in the Union. The South could have had slavery forever if they had disavowed their instruments of secession and ratified the Corwin Amendment.

If Lincoln and the radical Republicans had truly wanted to free the slaves, why did they not propose and pass an amendment to the Constitution which would have outlawed slavery, not one which would have made it perpetual? After the secession of the states of the South, Lincoln’s Republicans controlled both houses of Congress. To claim the South fought the war to preserve slavery is absolutely ludicrous and the argument of fools, the institutionalized ignorant and Cultural Marxists.

If Lincoln did not call up troops to invade the seven states of the Deep South in April of 1861 to destroy slavery, then why did he do so? On this point the person who commented on my article was correct. Lincoln called up troops and eventually invaded the South to “preserve the Union.” Was this a noble effort on the part of Lincoln and the Republican Party to keep the country together or were their intentions self-serving?

The fears of many of our founders came to reality with the election of Abraham Lincoln in 1860. Abraham Lincoln was a purely sectional candidate and with his election, a sectional president. Lincoln did not receive one electoral vote in fifteen states. The only states where he received an electoral vote were north of the Mason-Dixon line. Lincoln did not appear on the ballot in ten Southern states. In the popular vote, Lincoln received 1,866,452 while other candidates for president received 2,815,617. The South was left, just as the colonists were in 1775, in a taxation without representation paradigm.

When it comes to taxation, the South, in 1860, was contributing, depending on the source, between 75-95% of the revenue for the entire country derived basically from the protectionist tariff. The fight over the tariff laws had been ongoing for decades with the South proposing secession in 1832.  While the North was profiting greatly from slavery and cotton, the product of slavery, and had been doing so for over a century,** the South was providing the revenue which was overwhelmingly being used for internal improvements in the North.

Influential people of the North, such as Horace Greeley, at first were more than willing to let the Southern states secede until they were faced with the reality of the North losing a great majority of its revenue. On November 9, 1860, as editor of the New York Tribune, Greeley wrote the following:

“. . . and if the Cotton States shall become satisfied that they can do better out of the Union than in it, we insist on letting them go in peace. The right to secede may be a revolutionary one, but it exists nevertheless; and we do not see how one party can have a right to do what another party has a right to prevent. We must ever resist the asserted right of any State to remain in the Union and nullify or defy the laws thereof: to withdraw from the Union is quite another matter. And whenever a considerable section of our Union shall deliberately resolve to go out, we shall resist all coercive measures designed to keep it in. We hope never to live in a republic, whereof one section is pinned to the residue by bayonets.”

Greeley compared forcing a state to remain in the Union against its will to holding a person to slavery. Government idolators and revisionist historians argue Greeley changed his mind on secession when faced with the reality of separation, but, it was the loss of revenue that prompted Greeley’s change of heart.

Our founders passed a tariff in 1789, claimed to be temporary, in order to create revenue to pay off the war debt. But, then, just like today, politicians refuse to eliminate any source of revenue once it is enacted. Alexander Hamilton would use these tariffs to protect favored industries early on. In 1816, the first purely protectionist tariff was passed—again politicians of the day claimed it would be temporary.

For 44 years, protectionist tariffs were used to economically rape the South in order to provide revenue for protected interests in the North and provide revenue for internal improvements, primarily in the North. After the economic recession of 1857, northern politicians moved to increase the tariff again. The end result was the Morrill Tariff.

Lincoln was on record of having said while a candidate for the Illinois legislature, “My politics are short and sweet, like an ‘old woman’s dance’ I am in favor of a national bank. [Today’s Federal Reserve] I am in favor of the international improvement system and a high protective tariff.”

Lincoln would retain his love of “high protective tariff(s)” for he knew, as many others began to realize after the secession of seven states of the South, that without that revenue stream the North and industry favored by the Republican Party elite would suffer an economic disaster. These circumstances would lead Lincoln to again comment on his beloved protectionist tariffs.

If I do that what would become of my revenue? I might as well shut up housekeeping at once.” ~ Lincoln in response to the suggestion by members of the Virginia Peace Commission that he abandon Fort Sumter. “Housekeeping” is a euphemism for federal spending.

But what am I to do in the meantime with those men at Montgomery [at the time the Confederate Capitol] Am I to let them go… and open up Charleston, etc., as ports of entry with their 10 percent tariff. What, then, would become of my tariff? ~ Lincoln to Colonel John Baldwin a deputy of the Virginia Peace Commissioners, April 4, 1861.

Again, the North was beginning to realize the catastrophic results of allowing the secession of the states of the South. On December 10, 1860, the Daily-Chicago Times stated the impending disaster quite succinctly:

In one single blow our foreign commerce must be reduced to less than one-half what it now is. Our coastwise trade would pass into other hands. One-half of our shipping would lie idle at our wharves… Our manufactories would be in utter ruins… millions of our people would be compelled to go out of employment.”

Yes, Lincoln prosecuted a war to preserve the Union in direct contrast to the beliefs of those who founded this country. The basic positions of the people of the South were almost identical to those of our founders who went to war to provide them with a government operating with their consent. Abraham Lincoln went to war to deny the people of the South their representation and consent in how they were governed.

Abraham Lincoln and King George III had much in common and they both dealt with dissenters in the same manner—coercion, force, and violence.

The people of the South were merely carrying on the traditions of Liberty espoused by their ancestors and the tenets of the Declaration of Independence. Lincoln, in essence, fought a war to destroy the tenets of our founding charter.

* Team of Rivals, The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Godwin (Lincoln apologist)

** Complicity, How the North Promoted, Prolonged and Profited From Slavery. By Ann Farrow, Joel Lang and Jennifer Frank (below from Amazon concerning this book.

“Slavery in the South has been documented in volumes ranging from exhaustive histories to bestselling novels. But the North’s profit from–indeed, dependence on–slavery has mostly been a shameful and well-kept secret . . . until now. In this startling and superbly researched new book, three veteran New England journalists demythologize the region of America known for tolerance and liberation, revealing a place where thousands of people were held in bondage and slavery was both an economic dynamo and a necessary way of life.”

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  1. I very much agree. I admire Lincoln for eventually coming around to embracing the abolition of slavery. Whether it was for noble or political purpose I have no idea.

    But holding him up as a “great President” is an insult to the country and our Constitution IMO.