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JeffBrooks

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The South's only hope of ultimate victory was to hold out long enough and inflict such heavy losses on the North that the Northern public became so war-weary that they would demand their political leaders end the fighting. On the one hand, if the Confederacy's capital were located in Montgomery, Atlanta, or some other place farther from Northern territory, the Confederacy might have held out longer. On the other, with the geographic advantages that the Confederacy enjoyed in Virginia, it could be argued that fixating Union attention on Richmond allowed the Confederates to turn the Virginia theater into a meat-grinder for Union troops, which otherwise would not have happened.
 

uaskme

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Thanks for your response.
Again, few if any among us asserts that there was just "one single cause". What has been asserted ad infinitum is that among the many causes there was one, single root cause, the one that more than any of the others was the reason for seces
This Thread was started with the premise the OP, was being called a Lost Causer. Members came to that conclusion, because he, and many others here, don't believe Slavery was the Single Primary Cause. The definition of Primary, as I understand the OP, is of chief importance, prime, central. So, many of us believe there were More Causes other than Slavery that were at least as Important as Slavery, some of which were More Important that Slavery, to some. It is impossible to define something as Absolute. We, have debated this, the relation of when the States seceded. etc

The Single Causers here disagree with those, who believe there were more, than 1 Primary Cause. We understand that those who disagree, believe there were other issues. But those issues relevance seem to be diminished as to importance, to make them Secondary, or Subordinate.

I think that is a fair analysis. This thread has rambled, as they always do. However, I think the purpose has been served. We have a Term for those who can't identify but 1 Primary Cause. They are SINGLE CAUSERS. And, this is supported by the Single Cause Fallacy:

The fallacy of the single cause, also know as complex cause, causal oversimplification, causal reductionism, and reduction fallacy, is a fallacy of questionable cause that occurs when it is assumed that there is a single, simple cause of an outcome when in REALITY it may have been caused by a number of only jointly sufficient causes. Emphasis mine, source Wikipedia

So thank you for your participation. You have defined your premise that Slavery was the only Primary Cause. Hope those who believe that Slavery is the Only Primary Cause, will understand why some, Don't support their conclusion.
 
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ForeverFree

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I have mentioned this book previously, and I would recommend it to all again. At the Precipice: Americans North and South during the Secession Crisis, by the late historian Shearer Davis Bowman, is a very good exploration of war causation. He focuses on competing notions of the “interests, rights, and honor” that were held by the sections during the war. It is not a fun read, as it strikes me that Bowman is writing for a graduate school class, and not a mass audience. One other complaint is that the book lacks a "narrative coherence," however I don't know that a "narrative" is needed to provide historical interpretation... but let me not get started on that.

One key take away for me from the book for me is that the war was not just about competing issues, but rather, about competing beliefs, emotions, mindsets. As I have come to see it, the war was about different and competing identities.

And that would be my main point on this subject: if we look at the war as simply about issues, and not beliefs, views, emotions, and identities, it's hard to get a grip on how this war came. This is why the idea that the conflict between free labor and slave labor is the root cause of the war is so convincing to me: that conflict stirred up passions on both sides that no other sectional conflict at the time did, or could. These passions, as much as, or more than the “issues,” are pivotal to understanding why the war came.

- Alan
 
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