Jefferson wrote to John Holmes of the Missouri Compromise- “but this momentous question, like a fire bell in the night, awakened and filled me with terror. I considered it at once as the knell of the Union. it is hushed indeed for the moment. but this is a reprieve only, not a final sentence. A geographical line, coinciding with a marked principle, moral and political, once conceived and held up to the angry passions of men, will never be obliterated; and every new irritation will mark it deeper and deeper.”
Wolf by the ears…
Missouri’s admission to the Union as a slave state… threatened the tenuous balance- 22 states, 11 with slavery, 11 without. Missouri was the first territory carved from the Louisiana Purchase to apply for statehood. Jefferson’s vision of America as a land of small, republican farmers was in danger of devolving further into the plantation gang labor system dominating the tidewater south.
Henry Clay of Kentucky
Henry Clay’s solution to the crisis is often reviled… by historians for perpetuating slavery and providing the United States the opportunity to conquer more land. This New Left interpretation of history overlooks the contributions Clay made to our republic during its formative years. His American System had revitalized the nation following destructive War of 1812. Clay had convinced Madison, the National Bank’s most vocal critic, to recharter it in 1816. He had rewritten the rules of the House of Representatives and established the post of Speaker as the force we know it today. Firebrands bent on defending slavery at all costs- even peace and prosperity for all- could not be allowed to derail Clay’s vision. The Missouri Compromise has to be studied from all points of view.
Clay’s Compromise saved the republic in 1820… arm-chair historians(like Jamelle Bouie @jbouie at Slate) are quick to condemn the Compromise as an extension of slavery- but what if the Civil War had started in 1820? Was there a leader like Lincoln on hand to defend the Union? Would the people of the free states supported action against secessionists? If not for Clay, the slave-holding South would have emerged from this crisis in a stronger political position. The Union may never have recovered and abolition would have been dealt a serious blow.
The buck stops here, General.
Harry Truman’s delightfully salty answer to why he fired Douglas MacArthur… spoke volumes about the division between our civilian and military authorities:
“I fired him because he wouldn’t respect the authority of the President…I didn’t fire him because he was a dumb son of a bitch, although he was, but that’s not against the laws for generals. If it was, half to three-quarters of them would be in jail.”
The buck is in his pocket
Today it appears the proverbial shoe is on the other foot… the ignorant whelp with conjectural progeny is in the oval office. Generals are now trying to steer a rational course and save the republic from a man-child with a serious Napoleon complex. The lines between the civilian and military are dangerously blurred.
Autumn is never a second Spring…
- “Draining the swamp” actually means crippling the government to the point of ineptitude
- It is a woeful administration that can be mocked and manipulated by the North Korean regime
- This President is well beyond the impeachment standards established by Madison and Hamilton
- Neither political party is able to provide leadership
- Paul Ryan is not even an insect on Henry Clay’s tombstone
- Trump supporters will remain so, until he demands their sons and daughters risk their lives overseas
- Elon Musk is not the new Thomas Edison
- US Grant is an overrated tactician
- William S. Rosecrans is an underrated tactician
- Please finish the Eisenhower Memorial
- Those of us who love history must be vigilant during this chaotic time of revision and destruction
- We must not allow this coddled and entitled generation to rewrite our history
- There is no white supremacy at the University of Virginia
- Confederate monuments in public spaces should be moved to cemeteries and battlefields
- Corporate Charter Schools betray the original intent of the movement
- School choice works
- Historia est Magistra Vitae
To stop desecrating my memory
Fans of the musical “Hamilton” enjoy hearing the Framer rap… about issues dealing with our Constitution. A novel approach that has undoubtedly peaked the interest of the notoriously cynical millennial generation.
Practically Historical encourages young audiences to read Hamilton… as his political writings are some of the most valuable in the American canon.
I do more than rap
Americans have granted power to a most dangerous demagogue… and he appears willing to sacrifice almost anything for what he defines as “security.” Hamilton cautioned his people in Federalist #8
“But in a country, where the perpetual menacings of danger oblige the government to be always prepared to repel it, her armies must be numerous enough for instant defence. The continual necessity for his services enhances the importance of the soldier, and proportionally degrades the condition of the citizen. The military state becomes elevated above the civil. The inhabitants of territories often the theatre of war, are unavoidably subjected to frequent infringements on their rights, which serve to weaken their sense of those rights; and by degrees, the people are brought to consider the soldiery not only as their protectors, but as their superiors.”
Globalism and free trade have been US policy since the Reagan administration… Donald Trump attempts to turn back the clock on trade policies- his critics are quick to attack any position he takes. America has a long tradition of protective trade policies, but Trump’s critics are unwilling to acknowledge the historical context.
Listen to this rap
Before rapping about his life on Broadway… Alexander Hamilton was one of the earliest advocates for protectionist trade policies. Hamilton considered tariffs an essential part of government investment in economic growth. He did not want the United States to remain a tiny agricultural nation beholden to the European grain markets. Protecting our young industry was an important first step. Hamilton argued:
“Taxes are never welcome to a community, [but] an increase of duties shall tend to second and aid this spirit [of manufacturing], they will serve to promote essentially the industry, the wealth, the strength, the independence, and the substantial prosperity of the country.” 1791
Alexander Hamilton and Donald Trump sharing tariff policies?…. I’m not sure the crowds at Hamilton! the musical will approve this political alliance.
Filed under Ephemera, News
“I, am laying the foundation of an University in my native state, which I hope will repay the liberalities of it’s legislature by improving the virtue and science of their country…I have been myself the Architect of the plan of it’s buildings, and of it’s system of instruction. four years have been employed on the former, and I assure you it would be thought a handsome & Classical thing in Italy…I have preferred the plan of an Academical village rather than that of a single, massive structure…So it’s most splendid object, and a constant gratification to my sight. “
Go to community college, kiddies…
No one is comfortable giving President Trump credit for much… but the spoiled, ungrateful cretins who desecrated Jefferson’s likeness on the campus of HIS University are bringing Trump’s somber picture to life. He warned that the removal of statues to Confederate leaders may lead to similar action against our Founders, like Washington and Jefferson.
In the heart of his beloved academical village… Jefferson’s life’s work is naively slandered in name of trendy activism and political correctness. Students taking full of advantage of Jefferson’s foresight, vision, and effort dare to question the man and manner their opportunities were provided. The hubris required to demand the removal of the University’s Founder; as well as, linking him to traitors who fought to destroy the country he helped create- is beyond comprehension. Twenty-somethings so self-centered and lazy as to carry dozens of photographs of themselves(dressed and undressed)- possess a moral superiority over Thomas Jefferson? Irony….
To stop desecrating my memory
The post-millennial generation has doomed us… the Founders predicted our fate if the population became ignorant and forgot its past.
President Trump’s grasp of American history is nearly as suspect as his… grammar and usage- PracticallyHistorical wants to help our 45th President amend some of his historical misconceptions:
No studying required