Restricted Debate Would the USA be better off to have let the Confederate states go peaceably ?

WJC

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#81
I certainly wish the USA had done so; one thing for sure, the South would have been better off.
As someone who has spent much of my life in various parts of the South, I find it incredible that anyone today can make such a statement. It appears the 'America haters' are far more widespread than generally thought.
 

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#83
In a word no. In a more diverse explanation, it would have been national suicide. Letting the Confederacy go, peacefully (or by force of arms) would have been a bold faced admission that the government in Washington did not control the nation from sea to shining sea and was no longer the dominant power on the continent. Setting aside loss in war, a peaceful secession is even worse. It establishes secession as a viable alternative to participating in the national government or economy. There is no need to obey Washington when you can freely leave to join another nation or make your own.

Imagine in 1861, all the slave states secede, the Utah Territory, citing precedent and its own desires, secedes as well. The Pacific States and territories, as yet unconnected by railroads, decide that they have been given the short shift and also choose to secede shortly thereafter. Instead of one unbroken nation stretching from coast to coast it is one larger, more powerful nation, and a patchwork of smaller ones which have varying regional interests.

This could lead to future disastrous wars, foreign meddling on the continent or in the Caribbean. There is no longer a United States to oppose European intervention in the Western hemisphere.
And to some this would have been a good thing. Empires by their merely being are inherently bad, some more than others.
 

CSA Today

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#85
As someone who has spent much of my life in various parts of the South, I find it incredible that anyone today can make such a statement. It appears the 'America haters' are far more widespread than generally thought.
It appears your life in the South may have been before the South haters became more prevalent than anybody thought.
 
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#86
It appears your life in the South may have been before the South haters became more prevalent than anybody thought.
Name one "South"hater. The South would be far worse off as an independent nation because each Southern state for about the last eighty years receives more in federal spending then they contribute in federal taxes.
Black people in the South only received Civil Rights due to federal intervention. No Southern state voluntarily rid itself of de jure Apartheid.
Leftyhunter
 
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#87
And to some this would have been a good thing. Empires by their merely being are inherently bad, some more than others.
Name one contemporary Southern politician who opposed federal policy towards the Indian's in terms of seizing their territory or the Spanish American War?
Leftyhunter
 

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#88
Name one "South"hater. The South would be far worse off as an independent nation because each Southern state for about the last eighty years receives more in federal spending then they contribute in federal taxes.
Black people in the South only received Civil Rights due to federal intervention. No Southern state voluntarily rid itself of de jure Apartheid.
Leftyhunter
Whose fault is that? Southerners might surmise that it was to keep more blacks in the South.
 
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#89
In a word no. In a more diverse explanation, it would have been national suicide. Letting the Confederacy go, peacefully (or by force of arms) would have been a bold faced admission that the government in Washington did not control the nation from sea to shining sea and was no longer the dominant power on the continent. Setting aside loss in war, a peaceful secession is even worse. It establishes secession as a viable alternative to participating in the national government or economy. There is no need to obey Washington when you can freely leave to join another nation or make your own.

Imagine in 1861, all the slave states secede, the Utah Territory, citing precedent and its own desires, secedes as well. The Pacific States and territories, as yet unconnected by railroads, decide that they have been given the short shift and also choose to secede shortly thereafter. Instead of one unbroken nation stretching from coast to coast it is one larger, more powerful nation, and a patchwork of smaller ones which have varying regional interests.

This could lead to future disastrous wars, foreign meddling on the continent or in the Caribbean. There is no longer a United States to oppose European intervention in the Western hemisphere.
I agree that there are two kinks in my chain. Letting the south go only to fight them in the future would be a possibility and secession would set a precedent. These things could be negotiated and friendly terms agreed to. Pledges of alliance and trade agreements and such could have been worked out. No expansion beyond the seceding states themselves.
Just like they did in 1869 they would officially determine secession illegal and pass constitutional amendments to cover this. Perpetual alliances and free trade so that the south was independent but obligated to these alliances. Something like NATO. The TCRR was already half way across the continent to the mississippi and could have been completed earlier in the absence of war.
This is a huge “what if” and still leaves open the possibility but greatly reduces the possibility of war.
Even with the threat of war california and other western states chose free over slave and petitioned for statehood. With the exception of Utah there is no reason to believe they would do anything differently.
 
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#90
I honestly doubt that if we had split into the USA and CSA that it would have simply ended there. Once that precedent had been set there would be little stopping other states or groups of states from seceding from either country if they decided it was in their interest to do so.
 

WJC

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#91
It appears your life in the South may have been before the South haters became more prevalent than anybody thought.
Thanks for your response.
I've yet to meet a "South hater".
Americans, as a rule, believe in 'live and let live'. Outside of this Forum, I haven't seen anyone criticize another from a different state or region except as a friendly joke. Here it seems standard fare.
We ought to eliminate it from our conversation. The divisive issues are long gone, we are "one nation", and we need to 'get over it'.
 

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#92
Thanks for your response.
I've yet to meet a "South hater".
Americans, as a rule, believe in 'live and let live'. Outside of this Forum, I haven't seen anyone criticize another from a different state or region except as a friendly joke. Here it seems standard fare.
We ought to eliminate it from our conversation. The divisive issues are long gone, we are "one nation", and we need to 'get over it'.
I doubt you ever et a South
Thanks for your response.
I've yet to meet a "South hater".
Americans, as a rule, believe in 'live and let live'. Outside of this Forum, I haven't seen anyone criticize another from a different state or region except as a friendly joke. Here it seems standard fare.
We ought to eliminate it from our conversation. The divisive issues are long gone, we are "one nation", and we need to 'get over it'.
I doubt you've met "America haters" either. Post#82.
 

John S. Carter

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#93
The United States would never have been better off by letting the South go in peace. However I think the South would have benefited from independence, particularly by avoiding all the death and destruction of the war. The institution of slavery is the wild card here, and there's no way to know how long it would have lasted in an independent South. In any case, the US has always been better off with the economic, cultural and religious influence of the South in its national life.
One of the worse fears that the Founders had was that European countries would take advantage of a divided nation esp.England.They realized that the only method to avoid this was though a solid union of the states.When the states ratified the constitution the states agreed to this.As to the question,neither side would have benefited by the secession of one or the other.We the People signed the contract by ratification ,Lincoln was disciple of the Federalist politicians who saw the future benefits of a union Both shared a past .So the question is mute,there was to be no secession.As to slavery ,if you read Madison and Jefferson the issue was not slavery it was a strong central controlling federal government vs a local /state government.,election of 1801 Jefferson carries the South,why/how? The issue with the Western states was would they allow the Confederacy to control the Mississippi ,remember Vicksburg ,This would be tantamount to a foreign country doing this,remember Spain 's control of the river?Again there could be no SECESSION.
 

John S. Carter

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#94
I doubt you ever et a South


I doubt you've met "America haters" either. Post#82.
You two prove the fact that there are still people who can not be diplomatic but relay on hostility to communicate .One Nation .To bad dueling is illegal,You want to know what started the war,read your clips.
 

WJC

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#97
I doubt you've met "America haters" either. Post#82.
Thanks for your response.
Actually, I have. But what concerns me is the 'homegrown ones' here. How can anyone believe that any Americans- indeed, anyone in the world- today would be better off if the United States had lost and been balkanized? Is there no one who understands the effect of the end of the American experiment in self-government- particularly at the hands of a nation dedicated to the preservation and expansion of chattel slavery- would have meant?
 
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#98
Edited. The North DID NOT fight the war to free the slaves.

They didn't CARE about the slaves, they CARED about resources and their own political power.

"Preserve the Union!," they said. Sure....why?
I did not say they did. What I said was that the only good that could come from maintaining the union is that slavery was abolished, which wouldn’t have happened if we let the confederate states go.
 
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#99
How can anyone believe that any Americans- indeed, anyone in the world- today would be better off if the United States had lost and been balkanized?
My position is not that the United States had lost but rather had not fought. The result could have been mutually beneficial and friendly relations, not Balkanized. We had no trouble being friends with England. Not much would have to change. Establish borders for the confederacy within which they are autonomous and sovereign .
However two more kinks in my chain. Slavery would be extended and the south would never agree because their goal was the expansion of slavery. I do not see a compromise that the south would have accepted but this is/was a “what if “ question. I do not see it as an end to the American experiment , just a reduction of territory.
 
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I agree that there are two kinks in my chain. Letting the south go only to fight them in the future would be a possibility and secession would set a precedent. These things could be negotiated and friendly terms agreed to. Pledges of alliance and trade agreements and such could have been worked out. No expansion beyond the seceding states themselves.
Just like they did in 1869 they would officially determine secession illegal and pass constitutional amendments to cover this. Perpetual alliances and free trade so that the south was independent but obligated to these alliances. Something like NATO. The TCRR was already half way across the continent to the mississippi and could have been completed earlier in the absence of war.
This is a huge “what if” and still leaves open the possibility but greatly reduces the possibility of war.
Even with the threat of war california and other western states chose free over slave and petitioned for statehood. With the exception of Utah there is no reason to believe they would do anything differently.
There is no guarantee of long term friendly interaction, and even the Confederacy and the US would have had wildly different foreign policies. The Confederacy wished to annex Cuba, and provoke hostilities with Central American nations, and would most likely seek out allies in Europe to do this.

There is no such thing as 'perpetual alliances' and there is no reason for one between these nations, and no nation is obligated to any agreement or alliance. CSA or USA could break it on a whim.

Deseret, a Pacific Republic, and Northwest Confederacy, all could break away simply because they didn't agree with Washington. The precedent is set and a constitutional amendment would be 'locking the barn door after the horse has bolted' really. Worthless in the face of an indisputable fact.
 



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