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Secession Again split from Why was it so important for Lincoln to preserve the Union?

Discussion in 'Civil War History - Secession and Politics' started by thomas aagaard, Sep 9, 2017.

  1. thomas aagaard

    thomas aagaard 2nd Lieutenant

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    The swiss cantons only hold limited sovereignty. (their Constitution say this clearly) and as mentioned any change is the number of cantons in the federation, do require all cantons to be included in the decision.
    But it is an interesting country, with its army being one of the only real organizations that exist at the federal level.

    Naturally, in reality sovereignty is not a yes/no question.
    In many ways the EU have a lot more influence on how laws are here in Denmark, then the federal government have over state laws in the US. And there are a lot of things Denmark can't do. But it is primarily a lot of minimum rules in regulating the market. and allowing the free movement of goods and workers across borders within the EU.

    In the typical understanding of sovereignty the ability to conduct you own foreign politics and send ambassadors to other countries are central. And the EU members can still do that.
    (GB, Denmark and some others joined the US in the wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan... this was not true NATO and not true the EU, but the countries deciding on their own if joining the coalition was the right thing to do)

    GB is not seceding unilaterally as the south tried.
    GB is using a specific § in the EU treaty to tell the rest that they want out. This is then followed by a 2 year period where the two parties negotiate the future relationship. Making what they are doing legal.
     

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  3. TracyM61

    TracyM61 Private

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    Goodness, didn't realize you live in Denmark. That is interesting about the "limited" sovereignty of the Swiss Cantons. If by saying that all Cantons are required to vote toward any decisions, do you mean unanimous? The reason I ask is, because what I've read so far, if I'm not mistaken, is that the U.S. Constitution did not, at the time of the CW, stipulate that a state could not secede from the Union; that if there was a usurpation of power by the Federal government, which the South apparently thought had occurred through high tariffs, to name one of the important ones, then the Constitution (contract or compact) was considered null and void. This caused the South to secede with a total number of 11 states. It seems to me that there has to have been some real and valid proof on the side of the Confederates to garner that much support, in my mind anyway. (Correct me if I'm wrong on this)

    Regarding, Great Britain, and their secession seems to be the more appropriate way to go, notification of their intent to do so and 2-year waiting period, which sounds reasonable. The big difference though with GB is that it was already an established power in the world and could easily function economically, militarily, and otherwise on her own. In that respect, I think the resulting decision made by the British people was right for them and their country.

    Again, new to this study, but I would imagine there are strong views on both sides, depending on how one interprets the Constitution -- more Federal government control or greater autonomy through states' rights...
     
  4. Rebel Gray

    Rebel Gray Private

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    Ever heard of the 10th amendment?
    Ever read a map?
     
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  5. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    I have heard of it, but while I have seen a whole lot of folks confidently speak as if they understood it, very few it turns out really understood it.
     
  6. Eric Calistri

    Eric Calistri 2nd Lieutenant

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  7. thomas aagaard

    thomas aagaard 2nd Lieutenant

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    Since you are a new user I just have one question.
    Are you here to behave like a child? or to learn something?

    The location where the fort was build was transferred to the federal government by the South Carolina state house on 31st December 1836. (see quote below)
    The Fort was build on an artificial created island. It was build by the federal Government.
    By both federal and SC law the area was federal territory and as such not part of south Carolina.

    So SC had no legal right to the area and even if SC was legally out of the union, then that would have no influence on the legal status of the fort.

    From this topic:
    https://civilwartalk.com/threads/south-carolinas-claim-to-fort-sumter.72603/page-3
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2017
  8. Tin cup

    Tin cup 1st Lieutenant

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    "Also wanted to add that Judge Andrew Napolitano, Senior Judicial Analysis for Fox News
    "...does not know his Civil War history!

    "President Lincoln may not have been all that honest about his motives for pushing for the war,"

    Care to clarify that?

    Kevin Dally
     
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  9. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    Agree with a note that the status of Fort Sumter will be decided by war not a court.
     
  10. 48th Miss.

    48th Miss. First Sergeant

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    Not an expert as some here are but it seems to show that the bulk of the tarriff money from imports came into the Country through Northern ports this making it impossible for the South to be collecting it.

    I have heard,but not studied, that some shippi g issues had gone on where where cargo had to be transfered to Northern or other ships when coming from the South. Just have a vague recollection but I am sure somebody here can address this. Pretty sure I did not dream it but certainly not sure i heard it right.

    Would ships going from South to North or the opposite even be subject to a tarriff if the cargo came from inside the US.

    @jgoodguy, this up your alley.
     
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  11. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    No. Tariffs are only paid on foreign goods at the port of entry. No Tariffs on domestic goods or on foreign goods where the tariff has been paid. Short answer would be no tariffs on goods transported from State to State.
     
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  12. Eric Calistri

    Eric Calistri 2nd Lieutenant

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    It's propaganda, much of it modern propaganda. While some modern folks would prefer to simply never speak of slavery at all, we know folks in 1861 spoke openly about maintaining their "peculiar institution." But there is also a very interesting historical angle. As you know, the Confederates very much wanted Great Britain on their side. However, they were well aware that slavery, as discussed in their Declarations of Causes of Secession, did not play well in Britain. Trade, tariffs and protection, on the other hand were issues that played in Britain. Henry Hotze is the best known and most successful propagandist that the Confederacy sent to Britain. There is certainly a reason many of the modern folks who discuss tariffs as a cause of the war quote British publications, and Henry Hotze is often that reason.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2017
  13. Eric Calistri

    Eric Calistri 2nd Lieutenant

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    The tariff is certainly an important issue in 19th century America. However, according to what secessionists said in 1861, it played little to no role in their actions to leave the United States.

    There are several lengthy threads here that contain a lot of good (and much not so good) information on tariffs.

    A tariff is a tax paid on goods brought into the United States from a foreign nation that is paid by the importer. These were collected by the treasury department at customs houses located wherever said goods were brought into the United States. In the 1850s the Treasury operated about 150 customs houses. Goods exported from the United States, or shipped within the United States were not subject to tariffs.
     
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  14. 48th Miss.

    48th Miss. First Sergeant

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    Thanks, certainly it was central, slavery that is, as it touched it all. If i am not mistaken SC declaration is the most well rounded and covers many reasons. Others seemed to be generic about slavery.

    Thanks
     
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  15. ivanj05

    ivanj05 First Sergeant

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    Be quieter around here if there was.
     
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  16. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    That it would. OTOH That kind of quiet might be fatal. Seen it happen.

    Without the fight for truth, the truth just dies of boredom.
     
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  17. Eric Calistri

    Eric Calistri 2nd Lieutenant

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    I tend to believe that the writers of these Declarations of Causes, as well as the larger body of the Secession Conventions that approved them for public dissemination, understood their situation very well. And that any modern statement regarding "causes" that does not address this documentation should become immediately suspect.

    Which part of South Carolina's Declaration of the Immediate Causes Which Induce and Justify the Secession of South Carolina from the Federal Union refers to tariffs? I ask specifically because tariffs as a cause has been pitched in this thread, so with SC as the "most well rounded" in your estimation, what did they say about tariffs?
     
  18. Andersonh1

    Andersonh1 1st Lieutenant

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    It is helpful to look at the Confederate constitution, the supreme law of the CSA, to see what they did with tariffs. The idea that tariffs and preventing certain uses of tariffs meant nothing to the Confederates is clearly false.

    https://mises.org/library/confederate-constitution

    The Southern drafters thought the general welfare clause was an open door for any type of government intervention. They were, of course, right.

    Immediately following that clause in the Confederate Constitution is a clause that has no parallel in the U.S. Constitution. It affirms strong support for free trade and opposition to protectionism: "but no bounties shall be granted from the Treasury; nor shall any duties or taxes on importation from foreign nations be laid to promote or foster any branch of industry."

    The use of tariffs to shelter domestic industries from foreign competition had been an important issue since tariffs were first adopted in 1816. Southern states had borne heavy costs since tariffs protected northern manufacturing at the expense of Southern imports. The South exported agricultural commodities and imported almost all the goods it consumed, either from abroad or from Northern states. Tariffs drastically raised the cost of goods in the Southern states, while most of the tariff revenue was spent in the North.

    The Confederate Constitution prevents Congress from appropriating money "for any internal improvement intended to facilitate commerce" except for improvement to facilitate waterway navigation. But "in all such cases, such duties shall be laid on the navigation facilitated thereby, as may be necessary to pay for the costs and expenses thereof..."

    "Internal improvements" were pork-barrel public works projects. Thus the Southern Founders sought to prohibit general revenues from being used for the benefit of special interests. Tax revenues were to be spent for programs that benefited everyone, not a specific segment of the population.


    In another attack on pork-barrel spending, the Confederate Constitution gave the President a line-item veto. "The President may approve any appropriation and disapprove any other appropriation in the same bill." Anticipating the U.S. Constitutional amendment that would become necessary after Franklin Roosevelt's four terms, the President himself would serve only one, six-year term.

    In many circumstances, Confederate appropriations required a two-thirds majority rather than a simple majority. Without the President's request, for example, a two-thirds majority of both Houses would have been necessary for Congress to spend any money. This one provision, if adopted in the U.S. Constitution, would eliminate much of the spending that goes on today.

    The Confederate Founders also tried to make sure that there would be no open-ended commitments or entitlement programs in the Confederate States. "All bills appropriating money shall specify...the exact amount of each appropriation, and the purposes for which it is made," said the document. "And Congress shall grant no extra compensation to any public contractor, officer, agent, or servant, after such contract shall have been made or such service rendered." Such a provision would have eliminated the cost-overrun," a favorite boondoggle of today's government contractors.

    The Confederate Constitution also eliminated omnibus spending bills by requiring all legislation to "relate to but one subject," which had to be "expressed in the title." There would be no "Christmas-tree" appropriations bills or hidden expenditures.​


    http://www.dailyprogress.com/opinio...cle_0caceeaa-e18d-11e2-b6d6-001a4bcf6878.html

    Meanwhile, the Confederate states correctly judged the need for additional checks on the federal government’s power to tax some while benefiting others. The Confederacy is often portrayed as the villain in popular media. But the Confederate edits to the Constitution would have helped prevent a lot of the federal mischief we’ve experienced.

    The Confederate states added a prohibition on tariffs protecting specific industries and required all such taxes to be uniform throughout the country. Such a law removed the special-interest lobbying and patronage that elected Lincoln. It was based on the more general principle that if the power doesn’t exist to discriminate among specific industries, there is no incentive to buy the right to wield that power for your own industry’s benefit.

    They also removed the general welfare justification for collecting taxes; only providing for the common defense remained.​

    -----------

    The Confederate Constitution added much language to block any laws intended to “facilitate commerce.” Much of the tariff revenue collected from the South had been used to build railroads and canals in the North. In other words, one man’s money was being used to better another man’s state. The Confederate Constitution solved this problem as well.

    To the article giving Congress the power to regulate commerce, the Confederate Constitution added “but neither this, nor any other clause contained in the constitution, shall ever be construed to delegate the power to Congress to appropriate money for any internal improvement intended to facilitate commerce.”

    This additional clause was intended to stop the federal government from taking the money collected from everyone and use it to pay for one region’s development.

    The only internal improvement the Confederate Constitution justified was work on harbors and rivers. However, such improvements had to be paid for using money collected from the people navigating them.

    In the U.S. Congress, congressional favors were and still are passed by the slimmest of majorities. However, the Confederate Constitution solved this by requiring a two-thirds super-majority of a congressional vote before any federal funds could be spent. Its framers believed that the more impediments to legislative spending, the better. If spending were disliked by as many as a third of Congress today, it is likely we would be better off.

    The CSA founders also anticipated the congressional shenanigans of hiding large special-interest spending projects inside otherwise helpful legislation. They added a presidential line-item veto, writing, “The President may approve any appropriation and disapprove any other appropriation in the same bill.”​
     
  19. Eric Calistri

    Eric Calistri 2nd Lieutenant

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    The CSA Constitution also makes the Presidents Term one of six years, limited to a single term. Perhaps this is another thing left out of the Declarations of Causes that should perhaps be discussed as a "hidden" cause of secession.

    In February 1861 the Confederate Congress provisionally enacted the then current US Tariff regulations (the 1857 Walker Act) as their own. So the initial move regarding tariffs was to make the US and CSA tariffs identical.

    In May 1861 the Confederate Congress passed a Tariff act to be in force September 1. One familiar with the Walker Tariff acts of 1846 and 1857 (see here for example pages iii-viii and xliii-l) can immediately note where the confederates cribbed their tariff act from.

    For a group of folks portrayed as being so dismayed by the the tariff system that they left the Union over it, it seems odd that they constructed a tariff so nearly identical in their new Confederacy.

    On the other hand, the CS Constitution contains a number of very significant changes regarding Slavery. I can't help but notice the modern political propaganda of the articles cited above ignore those changes.
     
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  20. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    IMHO you have unfounded faith in folks that proved to be faithless in a prior union. That takes a incredible leap of faith and seems counterintuitive to greed and human nature. Not only were the secessionist unfaithful to the old Constitution, but unfaithful to the new. The ink was hardly dry on their new constitution before the were offering VA protective iron tariffs and I bet LA will be up for sugar tariffs. As near as I can tell unless a tariff was labelled protective, it pass CSA constitutional muster especially in the absence of a CSA Supreme court who is going to say no? The same for improvements, who
    says no? In actual practice the CSA constitution was largely ignored in matters of confiscation and conscription. Finally cotton growers were suprised to find that unlike the US Constitution there was no prohibition on taxing exports like cotton, a more intrusive tariff than they allegly ran from.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2017
  21. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    Good point on the tariff.
     
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