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Old April 22, 2011, 09:08 AM   #26
maillemaker
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The idea that the "Confederacy" is still at war with the United States is laughable. It's just a fantasy for people who still long for the romantic notion of days gone by. The Confederacy was destroyed as a coherent fighting force, and, thanks largely to the actions of Robert E. Lee and U.S. Grant did not choose to go on fighting a guerrilla war.

As for the reasons for the war. There is no doubt that most of the soldiers in the Confederacy did not own slaves, and in fact couldn't have afforded them if they wanted them.

If you look at history, most wars, in the end, end up being about money. Even today. The average soldier had no slaves, but the people bankrolling it sure did. The entire Southern economy depended on slaves. The rich people of the South depended on slaves to stay rich. There was a massive constituency of wealthy people in the South who had a vested interest in preserving slavery. Your average soldier went to war out of nationalistic pride, no doubt goaded along by those with money at stake. As Jay Gould (1836-1892) said, "I can hire one-half of the working class to kill the other half."

I cannot find the quote at the moment, but there was a fellow, I believe a German WWII officer, how said something about the fact that it's hard to get the farmer to go to war and fight, since he has nothing to gain after the war is over - he just goes back to his farm. So you have to couch the war in some nationalistic cause to get them to buy in.

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Old April 22, 2011, 09:14 AM   #27
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Noelf2 wrote:

Bill Akins wrote:
Which makes all confederate states to this day to be under forcible, coerced occupation and rule by a foreign government not willingly elected by their conquered citizens of that time and further means that technically a state of war still exists.

Noelf2 wrote: Lets take a field trip and ask the southern states if they believe they are under forcible, coerced occupation. The same folks who think that they truly are, were probably also abducted by aliens at one point or another.
Noelf2, if you will notice, in my above quote, I said "....by their conquered citizens OF THAT TIME." That means the Confederate citizens of 1865. I guess you missed that.

Naturally if you took a poll today, modern citizens would not feel the same way their ancestors did when their states were occupied, ruled and coerced into submission by the federal forces at the end of the civil war. Largely because modern citizens have been generationally propagandized by that same occupying federal government and most do not even know (or care) that the Confederacy never surrendered. But I fear you miss the point. It doesn't matter if modern citizens do not FEEL they are under forced, coerced occupation and rule by a foreign government. The historical fact is that in the Confederate states they have been and continue to be since 1865. That so much time has gone by that they do not realize it and have not been taught the truth that their ancestors knew....is irrelevant to the historical fact of that is exactly what happened.

Let us postulate what would it be like if Germany had negotiated a peace with England and America never entered WW2 and Germany still occupied France today. Now let's compare the French people's attitude regarding nazi soldiers in 1940 paroling the French streets with machine guns shooting French civilians to preclude any resistance to the nazi coercing occupying and ruling of their country by a foreign government....to what it would likely be like in 2011 after many decades of occupation. No German soldiers would be on the streets shooting Frenchmen anymore. The French citizen's children by that time would have been generationally indoctrinated to accept nazism. It would be the status quo. The history books in their classrooms would be controlled by the 2011 nazi government. The war would have faded to a dim memory for most. The French people as with people everywhere would have gotten on with the business of living and accepting their fate and making the best of it. Just as conquered and occupied Confederate citizens have done. Plus there would be no need for the drastic coercive actions by the nazi government by 2011. All French resistance would have long ago ceased. Instead of wearing uniforms the 2011 nazis would be modern politicians wearing suits. The culture of France would have been forever changed as would their political landscape. Eventually the French culture and the nazi German culture would merge into one culture and the French would have forgotten the abuses and atrocities fostered upon their ancestors.

If you took a poll of French citizens in 2011 that had been living under nazi rule since 1940, the attitude of French citizens in 2011 to their occupying government would not be the same attitude their ancestors had in 1940. For by that time it would no longer be in their minds an occupying government, it would simply be THEIR government.

But that does not excuse nor obviate the historical fact that they had been occupied by a foreign power against their will that conquered and coerced them with force into submission and that was not elected by their ancestors OF THAT TIME back in 1940.

Do you see the parallel Noelf2?

What 2011 modern citizens of the Confederate states might feel if polled today does not excuse nor obviate the historical facts that their ancestors were (and even to this day) are a conquered people whose government never officially nor formally surrendered and were occupied and had the rule of a foreign power imposed upon them without their willingness and without them electing that government AT THAT TIME that conquered them and rules them to this day. The fact that 2011 citizens might not even realize the historical facts nor care does not do away with the historical facts.

That is the point.

Noelf2, I am not here to argue with anyone nor to endure insults that intimate that I am a nut job of the type that would claim to be abducted by aliens simply because I know what the historical facts are that others may not want to recognize so instead they devolve to insults and intimations of anyone such as myself who recognizes those historical facts as being a nut job. I don't appreciate that kind of uncivil demonetization.

I have presented the historical facts in a respectful civil manner. I expect the same civil respect in return. And those facts are that the Confederate government never formally nor officially surrendered to the federal government and thus we are TECHNICALLY still at a state of war even though no hostilities exist. Just like the Seminole Indian tribe/nation was technically at a state of war with the federal government until they signed a formal surrender treaty in the 1960's.

I hardly think my recognition of those historical facts puts me in the same category as people who claim to be abducted by aliens.



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Last edited by Bill Akins; April 22, 2011 at 10:03 AM.
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Old April 22, 2011, 09:20 AM   #28
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you have to couch the war in some nationalistic cause to get them to buy in.
That's basically what Lincoln did with the emancipation proclamation. The war was going badly for the north and the northern people wanted out. Lincoln was up for reelection the following year and stood no chance of reelection the way things stood. His advisors came up with the idea of freeing the slaves to give the north a cause to rally behind. As was noted he only freed slaves in secesh states so as not to offend any voters in the north. It was a meaningless document as the South had already seceded(legally) and set up their own government so Lincoln had no authority.
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Old April 22, 2011, 09:39 AM   #29
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I hardly think the recognition of that historical fact puts me in the same category as people who claim to be abducted by aliens.
It's not the recognition of that historical fact that puts one in the category of people who claim to be abducted by aliens, it's people who post it as if it has some sort of relevancy today, as if there's a shot that the Civil War might be picked up again at any moment. Most people who say things like, "Well, ya know, the South never surrendered!" tend to be the kind of people who say it not as a recognition of historical fact.

Quote:
That's basically what Lincoln did with the emancipation proclamation. The war was going badly for the north and the northern people wanted out. Lincoln was up for reelection the following year and stood no chance of reelection the way things stood. His advisors came up with the idea of freeing the slaves to give the north a cause to rally behind. As was noted he only freed slaves in secesh states so as not to offend any voters in the north. It was a meaningless document as the South had already seceded(legally) and set up their own government so Lincoln had no authority.
I always figured that the Emancipation Proclamation was mostly to isolate the South from formal foreign (British) aid. Lincoln himself said he didn't care one way or another about slavery, he just wanted to preserve the Union. One sure-fire way to keep Britain out of the war on the side of the Confederacy was to take the moral high ground and make the North the side that was against slavery.

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Old April 22, 2011, 09:48 AM   #30
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Personally, i think we would be saddled with a LESS-overgrown and bloated system of national government if the South had been allowed to become a seperate country without interference from the North. Perhaps the CSA would've remained more a "confederacy" than a "union" as it has been argued was the original intent of those who founded the US to begin with. The North and South would probably be trading partners like the U.S. and Canada. Just my opinion.

Many of my ancestors were the starving Irish workers who were rapidly making slaves obsolete. Why maintain a human farm machine with a cost approximately equivalent to the cost of a, not inexpensive, modern farm tractor when you could toss a family of Irish immigrants some cornbread and let them do the work at their own risk?
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Old April 22, 2011, 10:13 AM   #31
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I don't agree with that. Slave owners weren't even 10% of Southern population. Poor free whites were in abundance.
True, but minorities have always ruled majorites. It is a rule of thumb that the top 20% own 80% of the wealth, currently the top 1% owns 35% of everything, you have to remember the Gold Rule: those that have the Gold makes the Rules!

http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesam...er/wealth.html


Slaveholding in the United States, a measure of wealth, was unevenly distributed:[16]
• As of the 1860 census, enumerating slave schedules by County, 393,975 named persons held 3,950,546 unnamed slaves, for an average of about ten slaves per holder. As some large holders held slaves in multiple counties and are thus multiply counted, this slightly overestimates the number of slaveholders.
• Excluding slaves, the 1860 U.S. population was 27,167,529, yielding about 1 in 70 free persons (1.5%) being slaveholders.
• The distribution of slaveholders was very unequal: holders of 200 or more slaves, constituting less than 1% of all US slaveholders (fewer than 4,000 persons, 1 in 7,000 free persons, or 0.015% of the population) held an estimated 20–30% of all slaves (800,000 to 1,200,000 slaves).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wealth_..._United_States



Quote:
Slaves for the most part were much better off than they were.
Poor whites did not want to be slaves, and slaves wanted to be free men, so many in fact the Fugitive Slave law had to be passed. Anyone remember the Dred Scott decision. Dred Scott sure did not want to remain a slave.

Quote:
To think these poor whites would go to war and risk their lives to protect slave holders rights is absurd.
It was absurd and they did. As one Alabama participant stated , “it was a Rich man’s war and a poor man’s fight”. The masses can be induced to do all sorts of things that are not in their benefit. Just recently we the middle class have accepted 14 Trillion dollars in debt. This will not be paid off in our lifetime nor in the lifetimes of our Children or Grandchildren. We did this so no Banker would miss his Christmas bonus. Does that makes sense? Well we did and that is absurd.

And why did we get involved in World War 1, Vietnam, Iraq, Somalia, and Libya? All pretty absurd wars in my opinion.


Quote:
I'm not saying slavery wasn't part of the reason for the war because it was but it wasn't THE reason or even the main reason.
It was all about Slavery. The ruling class had an economic advantage with slave labor. When you don’t have to pay someone, can feed them substandard food, don't provide fashion clothing, send the kids to school, or adequately house them, you can make a lot of profit off of someone. Slave labor and wage slavery is always more profitable than having to pay a free man fair wages.

That is the reason today we are being over run with illegal immigrants. Corporations don’t have to pay fair wages, work fair hours, meet safety standards. If they get uppity Immigration is called and the illegal’s are hauled, at tax payer cost, to the border. And we allow it. That's absurd.

As for the reasons of the time, just read the "History and Debates of the Convention of the People of Alabama, Begun and held in the City of Montgomery, on the Seventh Day of January, 1861" http://docsouth.unc.edu/imls/smithwr/smith.html#p129

It was all about slavery. The rich slave owners took their country to war to preserve their profits. If they lost, then so what, it would have been the same ending if the Northern Republicans had abolished slavery. If they won, the only downside was that a bunch of dirt poor whites had to die in the process.

My family, back to the Civil War believed in free soil, free labor, free men.
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Last edited by Slamfire; April 22, 2011 at 10:26 AM.
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Old April 22, 2011, 10:18 AM   #32
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Hmm...I should have anticipated that my OP would skew in this direction.

What I had intended to point out was that my "official" education regarding General Lee's decision to resign his commission and return to Virginia was presented as a very one dimensional "well, we're in it, so here I go" process.

Now, that was over thirty years ago, so I don't know what's being taught today. And obviously, given the limited time and resources that our schools have, an in-depth history of the Civil (or whatever you care to call it) War isn't practical. But General Lee was such a pivotal person in the war that it seems a shame that we didn't spend a bit more time (and by "a bit" I mean just a single class period) considering his decision, especially in light of the fact that his ruminations were mirrored by so many other Southern officers.

In fact, that transitions into yet another pet peeve of mine, which is that it seems like so few people are interested in learning about this country's history. Now, I don't mean with the kind of zeal and zest that most of us on this forum pursue it, but with even a casual interest. Without devolving into a political discussion (which we can get enough of outside these civil bounds), it seems that everything that happens in current events has a historic parallel that is almost always quite intriguing to learn about. No need to cite examples...that sort of talk belongs elsewhere, but I think that most of you will agree that in our lifetimes, the technology may have changed and the names certainly have changed, but the events are not unique. I find that quite fascinating.

Anyway, as I said, I didn't intend for this thread to go quite the way that it went, but as I pointed out in a different topic, I am but a minion and, since Gary hasn't seen fit to toss any leftover bits of his authority my way, I don't get to lord it over anybody. So I'm just the boss of me.

Carry on!
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Old April 22, 2011, 10:33 AM   #33
maillemaker
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It was absurd and they did. As one Alabama participant stated , “it was a Rich man’s war and a poor man’s fight”. The masses can be induced to do all sorts of things that are not in their benefit. Just recently we the middle class have accepted 14 Trillion dollars in debt. This will not be paid off in our lifetime nor in the lifetimes of our Children or Grandchildren. We did this so no Banker would miss his Christmas bonus. Does that makes sense? Well we did and that is absurd.
This is exactly spot-on, in my opinion.

Look at all the people eager to sign up and fight in the current wars going on in the Middle East today. At the most charitable, all you can say is that these wars are undertaken to secure freedom and security for the citizens of other nations. But much more bluntly, the United States has massive economic interests in the region. But your average soldier won't see any of the benefits of securing either one of these goals. He fights for perceived pay, tradition, pride, or duty.

This has probably been the way of war for most of recorded human history.

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Old April 22, 2011, 10:45 AM   #34
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And those with blinders on with persist with the idea that every person serving as a soldier in the CSA was fighting to preserve slavery because they knew they would personally benefit from that awful institution.

Yet, there is very little explanation from those same people regarding the following:

In a letter to President Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglas wrote, “There are at the present moment many colored men in the Confederate Army doing duty not only as cooks, servants, and laborers, but real soldiers, having muskets on their shoulders and bullets in their pockets, ready to shoot down any loyal troops and do all that soldiers may do to destroy the Federal Government and build up that of the rebels.”

There were also free blacks who owned slaves in America. There were blacks in Africa selling other blacks into slavery.

There were numerous northerners who owned ships and who made huge profits by bringing slaves over to America and later on from the transporation of cotton.

There were northern civilians and northern military officers who owned slaves.

It is rather ridiculous to think that every person who fought for the CSA believed in the institution of slavery so much that they'd risk everything; Life, family, and property....and endure such hardships as they did out in the field under the sun, moon, and clouds. If some of you want to believe that the War for Southern Independence was all about slavery then that is your choice to believe. To wrap up an explanation in a tidy little statement is to ridiculously over simplify a very very complex time in America.

As I stated before. SC made the point that the Federal Guberment failed to live up to its constitutional contractual obligations rendering the contract null-n-void. In today's Federal Guberment you could say that some things never change.

Robert E. Lee was fighting for "his country"....Virginia....NOT slavery.
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Old April 22, 2011, 11:26 AM   #35
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Robert E. Lee and the Democrats

The real story. Lee did not casually resign his commission. In fact, history tells us he agonized for days over the decision to resign his commission. Lee was approached by a bunch of nasty democrat trash, hell bent on tearing the Union apart and forming "an empire" of their own. Virginia would be leaving the Union and State Officials among other people approached Lee with the idea that Lee would have to make a decision whether or not to leave his home and go Union, or be loyal to his home state and provide some leadership in their military. Lee did not have an easy time with the decision, and he did not agree with the proposed policies of the Confederacy. In fact, he entertained ideas of participating in the re-shaping of the State government in the future. In the end, he chose to go with his State and he was never sure his decision was all together a good one.

The democrats have consistently worked to destroy America. It was true back then that democrat factions broke away to form a confederacy. It is true today that democrats have little use for American Constitutional law, for they work to abolish many aspects of our own constitution.

The democrat is the enemy of the American people. They were the enemies of the American people then, and they are the enemies of the American people now.

Today, the democrats are hard at work to abolish the standard that the American president must be American born. Democrats are not to be trusted. May they all rot like the trash that they truly are.
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Old April 22, 2011, 12:18 PM   #36
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Deleted, with apologies to Hardcase.

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Old April 22, 2011, 12:35 PM   #37
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I dunno what happened but I'll delete mine too.

Last edited by Hawg; April 22, 2011 at 01:24 PM.
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Old April 22, 2011, 12:35 PM   #38
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I think that next time I'll just keep my joy to myself.
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Old April 22, 2011, 12:55 PM   #39
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I think that next time I'll just keep my joy to myself.
I'm sorry, Hardcase. My prior post is now out of the discussion.
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Old April 22, 2011, 01:10 PM   #40
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I'm sorry, Hardcase.
Aw, it's OK, I shouldn't be so touchy. Besides, it's Friday and tomorrow's weather is looking good, so I ought to be able to hit the range.
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Old April 22, 2011, 01:13 PM   #41
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And those with blinders on with persist with the idea that every person serving as a soldier in the CSA was fighting to preserve slavery because they knew they would personally benefit from that awful institution.
I don't think anyone in this thread is making that case at all.

What has been said is that the wealthy people in power had a lot to lose since their wealth was largely based on slave labor. Just like today, the people in power with the wealth to bankroll wars have entirely different motivations for the war than the people doing the actual fighting.

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Old April 22, 2011, 01:24 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by Model-P
A person didn't have to own a slave to be pro-slavery. I'm sure those who didn't own slaves were keenly aware of the economic advantage their South enjoyed due to slavery.

Even today there are oodles of people who are adamantly against illegal immigration who hesitate to support enforcement, knowing what would happen to food prices were it not for illegal immigrant field workers. I believe every loyal southerner did indeed have that "dog in the fight", and knew it full well.
Quote:
Originally Posted by maillemaker
I don't think anyone in this thread is making that case at all.
I took the liberty of interpreting that a soldier in the CSA was also a loyal southerner. Did I go too far? Maybe Model-P can clarify who/what constituted a loyal southerner. I thought it was clear that the implication was that every loyal southerner (to include soldiers in the CSA) knew that the institution of slavery was good for them economically and therefore took up arms against the Federal Guberment to protect that institution. This even though most of them never owned slaves and in fact many of whom where themselves farmers who competed with farms/plantations that did use slaves.
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Old April 22, 2011, 01:25 PM   #43
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We have strayed from the original topic and now feathers are being ruffled. Let us remember the words of Major Parker at Appomattox: "We are all Americans."

Nap time.
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