It’s one of the ironic facts of history that Lincoln was fond of the tune “Dixie.” Following the capture of Richmond in 1865, he instructed the Union band to play it in celebration of the South’s surrender. “I have always thought ‘Dixie’ one of the best tunes I have ever heard. Our adversaries over the way attempted to appropriate it, but I insisted yesterday that we fairly captured it,” he said. “I now request the band to favor me with its performance.”’
Lincoln’s feelings aren’t hard to understand. “Dixie” is as good as any song that belongs to America. But what was to Lincoln a beautiful melody that had been “fairly captured” has today been marked down by polite society as an anthem of white supremacy and a relic of “Lost Cause” mythology. Indeed, amidst what they’re calling the “reckoning,” a passionate urgency to expunge the Confederacy from history has perhaps never been stronger. Read More
All of this could be written off as the grudge fantasies of political activists still mad about 2016 except it is backed by some of the wealthiest people in the world. Read More
Consider yourselves warned, America.
A previous entry in this space, written after an active-duty Army sergeant moonlighting as an Uber driver in Austin shot and killed a “mostly peaceful” anti-police protester who pointed his rifle at the driver at close range, talked about the make-believe revolution that has been taking place on the streets of America’s worst-run cities this summer: Read More
It’s obvious to all, at this point, that factional division is reaching a breaking point in America. Like a pair of locked-together tectonic plates pulling slowly in opposite directions, the strain has been increasing for a long time now – and when seismic ruptures finally occur, they happen suddenly, and release enormously destructive energies.
Some years back, John Derbyshire referred to this pent-up tension as a “cold civil war,” and here in 2020 more and more of us are getting the feeling that the term is apt. Is it? (The question has also been the subject of an ongoing weekly discussion between the radio host John Batchelor and historian Michael Vlahos.) Read More
In June, we counted 23 articles written about the prospect of a new or cold civil war in the United States. In July, that number doubled to 46. That’s no mere “uptick.”
Right or wrong, these prognostications from both Left and Right are significant for what they reveal about the nature of the political division in the United States. Interest in this topic will only increase as we approach the election in November and whatever lies beyond it. Read More
As the summer of our discontent drags on, the fall of 2020 will bring with it either the fall of America or its rise from the ashes. This Independence Day, the battle lines were drawn unambiguously, and the fate of our nation truly does rest on the decision of the American voters in November.
It is now a commonplace that every election of our recent history is “the most important” election ever – and it may often seem there is no reason for this other than to drive up voter enthusiasm and campaign contributions. Of course, each time, the candidates go on the next cycle just four years later, “No, this time it really is the most important election ever!” Read More
We all know the story of the Emperor’s New Clothes. It is not just a children’s story. Rather, it is an eternal story about human nature. If people are surrounded by a mass or a mob who speak nonsense as a Truth — with a capital “T” — then perfectly sensible people who internally know better will fall into line and babble the same “Truth.” For a reality check and sanity in the public arena, it ultimately often takes a little kid who simply has not been taught social conformity and political correctness to look and say, “But this ‘Truth’ simply is not true.” Read More
Alfred Lord Tennyson was right: We are not now that strength which in old days moved earth and heaven. Sadly, we do not have the consolation of being able to claim that we are “one equal temper of heroic hearts,” either.
The Marine Corps, long the most countercultural branch of the U.S. military, just banned even the informal use of the battle flag it used to wink at. Widespread emotional and sometimes felonious response to recent actions of a rogue police officer makes it perilous to tag preface that observation with an introductory clause like “For good or for ill,” so revisionist history proceeds not just unchecked, but actually endorsed (there’s no other way to explain awarding a Pulitzer Prize to the 1619 Project). Read More
During the Iraq War, the insurgency spent a lot of its resources attacking infrastructure, particularly the electrical grid. This made life miserable for ordinary Iraqis.
That outcome seems to go against the logic of insurgency, where the center of gravity is the people’s allegiance. But making life uncertain and unbearable means that even if the insurgents cannot win, they ensure the regime cannot win either. The cultivation of chaos exposes the government as ineffective and ultimately removes its legitimacy. Read More
Alabama’s port city removed a statue of a Confederate naval officer early Friday after days of protests over the police killing of George Floyd, with the mayor saying the monument was a “potential distraction” to focusing on the city’s future. Read More
For the first time in history this week, members of the House of Representatives voted without actually being in the chamber. More to the point, they had other members cast their votes for them.
Proxy voting, as it is known, was an extraordinary change to the House rules jammed through alongside Nancy Pelosi’s $4 trillion COVID-19 “relief” package, and it allows Members to delegate their voting responsibility – the one they fought so hard in an election to obtain – to another Member. Read More
At the beginning of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln summed up the case against partisan impeachment when he reminded his countrymen that, “It is now for [Americans] to demonstrate to the world that those who can fairly carry an election can also suppress a rebellion; that ballots are the rightful and peaceful successors of bullets, and that when ballots have fairly and constitutionally decided there can be no successful appeal back to bullets; that there can be no successful appeal except to ballots themselves at succeeding elections.” Read More
A coalition between the Democratic Party and left-wing militants is coming into view, manifesting as a combined arms approach of state and non-state actors working to suppress political dissent. It is paradoxically authoritarian and anti-establishmentarian, using law enforcement bureaus to effect their designs while simultaneously placing officers and agents in harm’s way. Read More
by Alveda King During this time in our nation’s history, there is a heightened demand to redefine America’s concepts of liberty, freedom, and justice. Independence Day is just behind us and before that, Juneteenth 2019. We are currently celebrating 400 years of African American history, so it’s likely not… Read More