Thursday, March 22, 2012
Lincoln didn't go into office planning to tear the country apart and foment a war which would kill over a half a million men. He didn't even have as a goal the emancipation of the people whom the country's laws allowed to be enslaved. The most he had in mind in regard to chattel slavery was the blocking of its spread into new territories and new states.
The war between the states, or "the war of northern aggression", as some in the south still prefer to call it, was wholly a creation of the intransigence and truculence of the leading men of the southern states. They had, through flamboyant rhetoric, painted themselves - in their own minds - into the well known corner of no escape. As a result, the election of Mr. Lincoln alone, without allowing him any communication as president, was felt to be a just cause for dissolving the union. Go figure.
It might be that there is something about Mr. Obama, or maybe it's Harry Reid, that just makes it impossible for anybody in the GOP to act in a civil manner these days. Nobody actually expects them to play nicely, of course, but their course of action over the past couple of years has been, well, it has been intransigent and truculent.
Given the "responsible spending" of the last three Republican presidents I find it hard to see how the country will be able to survive another one of them. President Reagan and both presidents Bush facilitated a treasure grab of unbelievable size by the super rich and ran up huge deficits for the public to pay interest on forever, and yet, the Republicans are now trying to blame George W.'s massive money give-away and its costs to the nation on Mr. Obama. Worse, a lot of people are buying it!