Reader Nathan Weinberger writes,
I've written to you on this subject before, but, as it's a pet topic of mine and given the anniversary that's just past (and some of the attendant arguments I've had to engage in over the last few days), I just had to tell you again after reading your recent anti-CSA articles: superb. You nail it every time. Really, an absolute pleasure to read.
Thank you very much!
Reader and blogger Erik Herbertson writes,
I always enjoy reading your blog. It's not only that I'm an Objectivist-oriented libertarian who happens to agree with much of what you write, there's an interesting mixture of depth and variation of subjects.
I'm especially indebted to your insightful texts about secession and the Civil War, like several of your blog posts and your papers about how libertarians should think about the Civil War and Liberal originalism. I have read James McPherson's Abraham Lincoln and the Second American Revolution, right now I read Jeffrey Rogers Hummel's Emancipating Slaves, Enslaving Free Men. I haven't finished it, but although Hummel is a serious scholar, in obvious contrast to the charlatan Thomas DiLorenzo, I'm not satisfied with his conclusions. I have just bought Harry Jaffa's A New Birth of Freedom. Very much Lincoln now :).
As a comment to your recent blog posts "Springtime for Jeff Davis and the Confed'racy" it might be relevant to state that within the coalition which constituted the Republican Party, there was a minority of (classical) liberal free traders, many with a background in the Democratic Party or the Free Soil Party, like Charles Sumner. As you know, many of these, including Sumner and other important figures like Carl Schurz and Charles Francis Adams left the party (some of them temporarily) in 1872 to form the Liberal Republican Party, and many of these people (not Sumner who had died) also joined the "Mugwump" bolt in 1884 to support Grover Cleveland instead.
However, I read that there were free trade Republicans who were not satisfied with Horace Greeley (who also was a protectionist) as the presidential candidate in 1872, and some I expect were suspicious of the coalition with the Democratic Party. In American Passages by Edward L Ayers et al, there's a quote: ""That Grant is an Ass no man can deny", said one Liberal Republican, "but better an Ass than a mischievous idiot.""
It's also important to point out that the important English free traders and laissez-faire liberals Richard Cobden and John Bright supported Lincoln and the Union, although they had reservations about his economic policy.
Thank you! And excellent points!