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In his first inaugural address, Lincoln stated clearly that (1) he had no legal authority to interfere with slavery where it existed, (2) that he had no inclination or intention to do so even if he had the legal authority, (3) that he would enforce the Fugitive Slave Act, returning runaway slaves escaping to the North to their masters in the South, and (4) that he fully supported the Thirteenth Amendment then being debated in Congress which would protect slavery in perpetuity and was irrevocable. He later famously stated, “Do not paint me with the Abolitionist brush.”
Although there was some opposition to slavery in the country, the government was willing to concede everything the South wanted regarding slavery to keep it in the Union. Given all these facts, the idea that the South seceded to protect slavery is as absurd as the idea that Lincoln fought the war to end slavery. Lincoln himself said in a famous letter after the war began that his sole purpose was to save the Union, and not to either save or end slavery; that if he could save the Union without freeing a single slave, he would. Nothing could be clearer.
Lincoln was the greatest tyrant and despot in American history. In the first four months of his presidency, he created a complete military dictatorship, destroyed the Constitution, ended forever the constitutional republic which the Founding Fathers instituted, committed horrendous crimes against civilian citizens, and formed the tyrannical, overbearing and oppressive Federal government which the American people suffer under to this day. In his first four months, he
These are just a few of the most egregious things Lincoln did during his despotic presidency. He set himself up as a tyrannical dictator with powers never before utilized or even imagined by any previous administration. During this four years of terrible war he was one of the greatest despots the world has ever known, his tyranny focused against his own countrymen, both North and South. He was called a despot and tyrant by many newspapers and citizens both North and South, until he had imprisoned nearly all those who dared to simply speak out against his unconstitutional usurpations of power. Those who disagreed with him were branded as “traitors”, just as were the brave and honorable men in the states which had legally seceded from the Union over just such issues as these criminal abuses of power by the Federal government.
The Union army, under Generals Grant, Sherman, Sheridan and President Lincoln, committed active genocide against Southern civilians—this is difficult for some to believe, but it is explicit in their writings and dispatches at the time and indisputable in their actions. Tens of thousands of Southern men, women and children—civilians—white and black, slave and free alike—were shot, hanged, raped, imprisoned without trial, their homes, lands and possessions stolen, pillaged and burned, in one of the most horrific and brutal genocides ever inflicted upon a people anywhere; but the Yankee myth of history is silent in these well-documented matters. For an excellent expose of these war crimes and their terrible extent, see War Crimes Against Southern Civilians by Walter Brian Cisco.
Only after the Union had suffered two years of crushing defeats in battle did Lincoln resolve to “emancipate” the slaves, and only as a war measure, a military tactic, not for moral or humanitarian purposes. He admitted this, remarking, “We must change tactics or lose the game.” He was hoping, as his original draft of the document shows, that a slave uprising would occur, making it harder for Southerners to continue the war. His only interest in freeing the slaves was in forcing the South to remain in the Union. His Emancipation Proclamation was denounced by Northerners, Southerners and Europeans alike for its absurdity and hypocrisy; for, it only “freed” the slaves in the seceded states—where he could not reach them—and kept slavery intact in the North and the border states—where he could have freed them at once.
The checks and balances of powers, the separation of powers, the constitutional constraints so carefully and deliberately put into place by the Founding Fathers, had all been destroyed in Lincoln’s first months. The Republic which the Founders gave us had been completely destroyed and a new nation-state was set up; one in which the free and sovereign States would afterward be only vassals and tributaries, slaves to an all-powerful, oppressive Federal government. This new nation-state is completely different in both nature and consequence to the original American Republic. One only has to look around today to see the end results and legacy of Lincoln’s war, his destruction of freedom, and his institution of despotic, centralized governmental power and tyranny.
This is the book that made it happen: the nationwide revision concerning the man who they tried to tell us was a great liberator. Dictator and slayer of liberty is more like it. Lincoln was not the godlike figure of myth and legend but an unusually cruel political operator who exploited the moment for personal gain, just as we’ve come to expect of modern politicians.
In this blockbuster, Thomas DiLorenzo calls for a complete rethinking of a central icon of American historiography. He looks at the actions and legacy of Abe Lincoln from an economics point of view to show that Lincoln’s main interest was not in opposing slavery but in advancing mercantilism, inflationism, and government spending: the “American system” of Henry Clay.
Through extensive historical investigation, DiLorenzo shows that the high tariff pushed by Northern industries, at the expense of Southern agriculture, was the main cause of the sectional conflict. Further, Lincoln’s goal in preventing Southern secession was the consolidation of federal power and the collection of revenue, not the elimination of slavery.
Through extensive research and meticulous documentation, DiLorenzo portrays the sixteenth president as a man who devoted his political career to revolutionizing the American form of government from one that was very limited in scope and highly decentralized—as the Founding Fathers intended—to a highly centralized, activist state. Standing in his way, however, was the South, with its independent states, its resistance to the national government, and its reliance on unfettered free trade. To accomplish his goals, Lincoln subverted the Constitution, trampled states’ rights, and launched a devastating Civil War, whose wounds haunt us still. According to this provacative book, 600,000 American soldiers did not die for the honorable cause of ending slavery but for the dubious agenda of sacrificing the independence of the states to the supremacy of the federal government, which has been tightening its vise grip on our republic to this very day.
You will discover a side of Lincoln that you were probably never taught in school—a side that calls into question the very myths that surround him and helps explain the true origins of a bloody, and perhaps, unnecessary war.
Thomas J. DiLorenzo, who ignited a fierce debate about Lincoln’s legacy with his book The Real Lincoln, now presents a litany of stunning new revelations that explode the most enduring (and pernicious) myths about our sixteenth president. Marshaling an astonishing amount of new evidence, Lincoln Unmasked offers an alarming portrait of a political manipulator and opportunist who bears little resemblance to the heroic, stoic, and principled figure of mainstream history.
In addition to detailing Lincoln’s offenses against the principles of freedom, equality, and states’ rights, Lincoln Unmasked exposes the vast network of academics, historians, politicians, and other “gatekeepers” who have sanitized his true beliefs and willfully distorted his legacy. DiLorenzo reveals how the deification of Lincoln reflects a not-so-hidden agenda to expand the size and scope of the American state far beyond what the Founding Fathers envisioned—an expansion that Lincoln himself began.
What if you were told that the revered leader Abraham Lincoln was actually a political tyrant who stifled his opponents by suppressing their civil rights? What if you learned that the man so affectionately referred to as the “Great Emancipator” supported white supremacy and pledged not to interfere with slavery in the South? Would you suddenly start to question everything you thought you knew about Lincoln and his presidency?