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Don’t interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties…Abraham Lincoln

It has long been axiomatic that the only way to determine that a politician is lying is to see if his lips are moving. If they are the chances are 99.999…% that he is. Certainly the statement quoted above – and hundreds of others not cited for lack of space – prove Lincoln to be the most prolific, if not the most accomplished, liar of the 19th century. We limit him to his time because the 20th and 21st centuries seem to be producing bigger liars yet all of who seem to be indebted to his vision.

A caricature of Abraham Lincoln, probably appearing soon after his nomination as Republican presidential candidate. The artist contrasts Lincoln’s modest posture at the Illinois Republican state convention in Springfield in 1858 with his confident appearance at the 1860 Illinois Republican ratifying convention, also held in Springfield. The two Lincolns are shown joined at the back and seated on a stump. The 1858 Lincoln (facing left) addresses a small audience of men, including a young black man. He denies any presidential ambitions, his words appearing in a cabbage-shaped balloon: “Nobody ever expected me to be President. In my poor, lean, lank face, nobody has ever seen that any Cabbages were sprouting out.” In contrast, the 1860 Lincoln (facing right) states, “I come to see, and be seen.” There is an implied criticism here of Lincoln’s reticence about his political views during the 1860 campaign, when from May to November Lincoln made no speeches except for a brief address at the meeting in Springfield. This may explain the less-than-enthusiastic, puzzled look of several of his listeners here…Library of Congress print

Our secret constitution : how Lincoln redefined American democracy Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, c 2001 George P. Fletcher United States. Constitution. 13th-15th Amendments Hardcover. 1st. ed. and printing. xi, 292 p. ; 24 cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. Clean, tight and strong binding with clean dust jacket. No highlighting, underlining or marginalia in text.  VG/VG  

The coming man’s presidential career, a la Blondin [Cartoon of Lincoln dressed as the famous tight-rope walker Blondin, crossing Niagara Falls carrying black man on his shoulders and “Constitution” as balancing pole] …Library of Congress print

George P. Fletcher asserts that the Civil War was the most significant event in American legal history, an event that created a new set of principles that continues to guide legal thinking today.

Much as historians and lawmakers strive to maintain a continuity with the Constitution of 1787, Fletcher shows that the Civil War presented a rupture not only between North and South but between two visions of the United States. The first Constitution was based on the principles of the republic
as a voluntary association whose principal task was individual freedom and which tolerated government only insofar as it was needed for the common defense. The government chosen by “We the People” sought, above all, to protect the rights of individuals and to limit the leadership of the nation to a capable few.

The second Constitution enacted in the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments, reinvented the United States according to the principles of
popular democracy where capability was exiled and the mob became king. Fletcher shows how this surrender to the mob, though suppressed for decades, shape our sensibilities today in our efforts to expand the range of those protected as equal under the law in the never ceasing struggle to build coalitions of the inferior to loot the public purse.

Although he attempts to dress it up as something fine and noble he completely ignores that these amendments were ratified, literally, at the point of a bayonet during military occupation and is unable to demonstrate how the people and states are more free after Lincoln than they were before. Another poorly reasoned and mediocrely written apologia for the tyranny of collectivism.


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