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Other/Miscellaneous => Off-Topic Discussion => Topic started by: emmo26 on January 18, 2013, 10:05:47 AM

Title: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: emmo26 on January 18, 2013, 10:05:47 AM
or even the Gettysburg Address

Im talking about like on milstone anniversaries i.e 100, 125 or the up and coming 150 years (Gettysburg Address).

Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 18, 2013, 10:11:43 AM
Well, we are and have been celebrating the Sesquecentenial since 2011. Some of us, anyway.

http://www.civilwar.org/150th-anniversary/ (http://www.civilwar.org/150th-anniversary/)

Aside from WWII it's probably the most talked-about/popular historical era in America. It's still not a subject you can politely bring up in certain company, though.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: emmo26 on January 18, 2013, 10:22:29 AM
It would be interesting to gauge opinion from the "old timers" on here,   on whether or not there where any ceremonies held (if any) back in the 1960´s,  to reflect the first 100 year anniversary.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 20, 2013, 01:17:56 AM
I don't believe I have ever heard anything, eg. on the news or whatever, about any anniversaries of the Civil War.

Sad to say, I don't even hear all that much about Pearl Harbor. That was the 9/11 of its generation, and not that long ago, and these days, when watching the news on December 7th, i virtually don't hear anything; maybe a brief item for 30 seconds about some little ceremony with soldiers who survived. On a major anniversary (eg. 60th, 65th, etc.) you'll hear a little more, about Pearl Harbor  or V-Day etc. But on a typical December 7th or June 6th, you virtually don't hear anything about it, and that is very sad. Even sadder is that anyone who remembers those events has to be a minimum of 80 years old or so; and as survivors fade away, the younger generations forget more and more


I have little doubt that the same thing will become of September 11th. On major anniversaries, like the 25th, 50th, etc. it will still be remembered. But on typical September 11ths in 30 or 40 or 50 years, you probably won't hear much about it.


Groggy: what do you mean about not being able to bring it up in polite company? People give you a hard time about the Civil War? Some rednecks still wanna be fighting it? I can't remember bringing it up, but I can't imagine getting a hard time if I would. You do seem to be a bit touchy though even  a discussion about a movie casually/peripherally goes the slightest bit toward politics  :P

and btw, emmo, I guess in some cases I would call it "loss" and in some cases "sacrifice." For those fighting to maintain slavery, I wouldn't call it a "sacrifice," I'd say that their death doesn't bother me.

it was an awful, awful, awful war (which war isn't?) with more than 600,000 boys dying by the hands of their own neighbors. People can argue the true causes behind the Civil war forever (slavery, states rights, secession, etc etc etc) but I just shake my head every time I think about it. The 1860 US census had the population at a little over 31 million http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1860_United_States_Census (which makes it right around one-tenth the current population which I believe is approximately 320 million or so). So nearly 2% of all Americans died in the five years of war; proportionately, that would be the equivalent of about 6 million Americans dying in a war today. (And that would probably mean an insanely high % of all young men in America died during those years, considering that almost all the 600,000 deaths were probably young men)

And what I certainly never hear talked about -- I didn't know anything about this until I saw it in GBU, read about it in Frayling's works, quotes by Leone, and then started reading about it on my own --  is how the POW camps (as we see in GBU) were comparable to what we saw in WWII in the Jap POW camps and Nazi concentration camps. That is just fucking mind-boggling. (I hate that phrase, but i can't think of a better one right now). Yeah, most Americans wouldn't believe you if you told them that their own POW camps, where their own neighbors were held, were comparable to JAP POW camps and Nazi concentration camps. There is a picture on this wikipedia page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andersonville_National_Historic_Site of an emaciated Union soldier who survived Andersonville, it traumatizes me every time I see it; he looks just like the photos I have seen of Jews who survived the Nazi concentration camps. Just a skeleton in a bag of skin.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Smokey on January 20, 2013, 05:58:46 AM
When I was a kid in the early 50's in my home town on Memorial Day (often called Decoration Day back then) they had a ceremony where they took
pictures of local vetrans. They would do the Korean war vets, then the WWII vets and so on. There were 2 vets from the Civil war. They had to be close
to 100 years old. My grandfather told me that they had lied about their age to get in the military.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 20, 2013, 07:15:19 AM
Groggy: what do you mean about not being able to bring it up in polite company? People give you a hard time about the Civil War? Some rednecks still wanna be fighting it? I can't remember bringing it up, but I can't imagine getting a hard time if I would. You do seem to be a bit touchy though even  a discussion about a movie casually/peripherally goes the slightest bit toward politics  :P

Neo-Confederate apologists are rather plentiful and rather nauseating. Go to your bookstore and you'll find plenty of books along the lines of The South Was Right etc. Let alone rednecks with Confederate flag decals everywhere. It can be a pretty touchy subject if you bring it up with certain people.

I merely avoid politics (the best I can) on here because it's a movie board.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 20, 2013, 07:41:48 AM
Neo-Confederate apologists are rather plentiful and rather nauseating. Go to your bookstore and you'll find plenty of books along the lines of The South Was Right etc. Let alone rednecks with Confederate flag decals everywhere. It can be a pretty touchy subject if you bring it up with certain people.

I merely avoid politics (the best I can) on here because it's a movie board.

I guess I have been living a pretty sheltered New York City life, (I am definitely one of those stereotypical New Yorkers who hasn't traveled much, and on the rare occasions he does travel, he hates it!) Yeah, I have heard on the news about some fights eg. about the Confederate flag in the South Carolina statehouse, etc. So there definitely is nostalgia for the Old South. As to whether or not that means there would be problems if one would mention the Civil War in the wrong company, I guess I can't say cuz it's never happened.
There definitely seems to be in recent years an attempt to disassociate the South/Civil War with the issue of slavery, ie. pretending that slavery wasn't really the overarching issue of the Civil War, perhaps cuz that allows the "nostalgic Southerners" to justify their nostalgia.
Here is a terrific editorial, written almost exactly two years ago, called "Commemorating secession, with sorrow and honesty" by the great Jeff Jacoby  http://www.jeffjacoby.com/8580/commemorating-secession-with-sorrow-and-honesty


As for the issue of politics on a movie board: I think it's dumb to debate politics not only on a movie board, but on any message boards or anywhere online, (I know some pathetic fools who spend all day on Facebook with useless political debates, it's pretty damn silly). But when I watch a movie and then discuss it on a movie board, I'd discuss any topic that the movie addressed, whether it's politics or anything else. Politics for its own sake is my least favorite subject in the world, but if I watch a movie that addresses a political issue, in that case I have no problem discussing that on a movie board; unlike some people I know, I wouldn't RUN AWAY from discussing said movie just cuz it's politics-related. I'm happy to talk about any topic that a movie addresses

(And btw, the preceding paragraph is unrelated to the topic of this thread; [it just came up as a peripheral issue, as these things sometimes do]. Nobody has any problem discussing past political issues, particularly here, I am sure it only came up cuz it's in a Leone-movie. I was talking about the completely unrelated issue of people discussing current politics on message boards; but this topic is perfectly appropriate]
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 20, 2013, 07:51:13 AM
When I was a kid in the early 50's in my home town on Memorial Day (often called Decoration Day back then) they had a ceremony where they took
pictures of local vetrans. They would do the Korean war vets, then the WWII vets and so on. There were 2 vets from the Civil war. They had to be close
to 100 years old. My grandfather told me that they had lied about their age to get in the military.

That seems like a big stretch. The Civil War was from 1860-1865. Even if they only fought during the last year in 1865, and even if they were only 15, that means the earliest they could have possibly been born was 1850. Assuming that's the case with both of them, if you remembered them in 1950, '51, '52, that means both would have been more than 100 years old. Certainly possible, but that's really pushing it  ;)


I remember reading in the last few years several stories about that the last surviving World war I vets from different countries dying; I believe a British woman just recently died, was the last one

looking it up now, I see here the wikipedia page for last surviving World War I vet from each country; yes, it seems that the last WWI vet just died a year ago, a 110-year old woman from the UK http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_last_surviving_World_War_I_veterans_by_country


so I guess this is similar to the vets you remember, maybe the last 1 or 2 left alive.

It's sad how eventually, the generations fade away. Who knows how long it will be before the last American soldier who fought in World War II dies, or the last Holocaust survivor. Anytime one of them dies, in addition to the usual sadness accompanying death, it's also sad how another precious link to the past is now gone
 You just hope that past events are remembered and honored even after its survivors fade away. eg. I would hope that in 100 years, when nobody who lived through 9/11 will be alive anymore, its memory will still be preserved.
And that's another of the numerous advantages of computers and the internet is that history is preserved, we're not just relying on paper books as they did in past generations. Most important is the word of mouth; each father telling his son what he experienced, and passing it down from generation to generation that way, and of course then it is written down as well. But anything that's preserved electronically means that it will be there always, we don't have to worry about a fire or flood destroying it. In the past, you needed special preservation techniques, airtight containers, the average person couldn't have. But today, digital equipment is available widely and cheaply. You can never predict the future, but just imagine in 50 or 100 years, people can search for and read every article, every piece of history about today. I don't know if they will be using Google or the internet or some new invention, but somehow, it'll all be around  ;) (come to think of it, does that mean my descendants who are born long after I'm gone will still be able to read my rambling nonsense on these boards? SHIT)
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 20, 2013, 11:18:10 AM
The Lost Cause stuff really grinds my gears. The Confederate leadership made no bones that slavery was the primary reason for their secession, as evidenced by the various secession ordinances. Northern states are criticized for using their states' rights to dodge the Fugitive Slave Act; so much for principle! Heck, the Confederate constitution enshrined slavery as a fundamental right. It's true the North initially fought to preserve the Union; more important though, the war started when the South seceded and then fired on Ft. Sumter. And what issue, pray tell, caused them to secede? Denying these facts is on a par with Holocaust denial or 9/11 conspiracy theories as dangerous distortion.

The idea that it was merely "states rights" (right to do what?) came up decades after the war yet has been accepted uncritically by a great number of people. Now it's taking bizarre mutations to claim that the South was more "diverse" than the North (true, slaves weren't white) and almost obsessive attempts to prove large numbers of blacks served in the Confederate army, as opposed to a relative handful in militia units. These people at least realize overt racism doesn't fly with most people anymore, yet have to tie themselves in knots to cast the Confederacy in any other light. Unfortunately, they also have abettors in certain libertarians who view any state action as compulsively evil, or extreme leftists like Howard Zinn (that last being odd, given how much Marxists used to venerate Lincoln).

It's especially galling because I've had many arguments, both in real life and online, on the topic. Confederate apologists are pretty sad as they can rarely more than parrot sloppy, identical arguments, gleaned from stuff like Thomas DiLorenzo's trashy Lincoln books. As someone who whose ancestors fought and died for the Union Army I have little tolerance for glorifying traitors, let alone intellectually lazy ones. So it's a topic sure to drive me into paroxysms of rage.

Rant over.

Anyway... I have no problems discussing political issues pertaining to film, since many movies are political in nature. You can't really talk about Stanley Kramer films or Battle of Algiers or Z without getting into some sort of political discussion. Talking about current events though is begging for trouble.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 20, 2013, 11:51:53 AM
Unfortunately, they also have abettors in certain libertarians who view any state action as compulsively evil

I'm afraid you have it backward here; libertarians are the staunchest advocates for states' rights, while liberals are the ones that are against states' rights, and push for everything to be nationalized.


It's kind of ridiculous how some extreme liberals have come to basically equate states' rights with slavery.

I was once at a lawyers convention, one of the panels was discussing federalism, and after the panel was over, I asked the liberal "as awful as it was that states were using the 'states rights' argument as a justification for slavery and discrimination, how many million times worse would it have been if the federal government would have nationalized those policies?" His mouth literally dropped open.

Just because states' rights was once (or many times) used to justify evil doesn't mean states rights is inherently  evil; on the contrary, it emphasizes the need for states rights, so that bad policies are never nationalized. As Justice Brandeis said, our system of federalism allows the states to be a laboratory of democracy.


If any of y'all are interested in the topic of Federalism, as a constitutional matter, you can watch the panel discussion here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4DBgfJpEN8 (I make a comment at 1:26:00, where I correct one of the panelists mischaracterization of a comment Rand Paul made about the Civil Rights Act; the panelist did correct himself  ;) )
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 20, 2013, 12:09:11 PM
I meant the State, as in the overall Federal government. Not states as in individual sections. Context is key.

My point is not states' rights is inherently bunk. My point is states' rights was merely used by the Confederacy as an excuse for seceding, not the reason it happened.

I appreciate the link. I'll give it a look provided I have time. O0
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 20, 2013, 12:19:05 PM
That seems like a big stretch. The Civil War was from 1860-1865. Even if they only fought during the last year in 1865, and even if they were only 15, that means the earliest they could have possibly been born was 1850. Assuming that's the case with both of them, if you remembered them in 1950, '51, '52, that means both would have been more than 100 years old. Certainly possible, but that's really pushing it  ;)

The last verifiable veteran of the Civil War died in 1956.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Woolson (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Woolson)

Of course, we should note the last survivor of the Crimea died just nine years ago...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timothy_%28tortoise%29 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timothy_%28tortoise%29)
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 20, 2013, 12:25:46 PM
I meant the State, as in the overall Federal government. Not states as in individual sections. Context is key.


if you just meant "government rights," then what right are you referring to as being evil in the eye of libertarians? It's true that libertarians view (almost) all gov't action as destructive and immoral -- with the exception of gov't action that protects individual liberty, such as a criminal justice system that prevents one person from harming another -- but what gov't action are you referring to in this context?
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 20, 2013, 12:31:39 PM
In this instance I'm referring to claims by DiLorenzo (a libertarian economist), Thomas E. Woods, and other scions of secesh apology that putting down an internal rebellion amounts to abuse of executive power. Not, mind you, merely that specific actions like Lincoln suspending habeas corpus amount to such.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 23, 2013, 05:57:17 AM
In this instance I'm referring to claims by DiLorenzo (a libertarian economist), Thomas E. Woods, and other scions of secesh apology that putting down an internal rebellion amounts to abuse of executive power. Not, mind you, merely that specific actions like Lincoln suspending habeas corpus amount to such.

Woods believes that the Southern states had a right to secede

and btw, Lincoln's predecessor, James Buchanan, believed that he had no constitutional authority to prevent the secession
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 23, 2013, 06:36:45 AM
Buchanan had no problems sending troops to suppress attempted secession by Utah Territory a few years prior to the war. I wouldn't put much stock into his views on the matter.

As for Woods, his books are best bought in bulk and used for toilet paper.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 23, 2013, 07:08:07 AM
I've never read Woods'  books, but I have seen some of his articles and videos, including one where he discusses what I said previously.

I'm not defending or opposing Woods here, I can't say I've seen much of his stuff, but considering the fact that you use basically use the term "crazy libertarian" as a redundant phrase, I'm not sure how much you are judging Woods'  actual writing or whether you'd say the same things about the works of all the adherents to the Austrian School of Economics.


btw, if you are interested in the legal/political history of presidential power, you can check out John Yoo's book called "Crisis and Command," in which he demonstrates how those presidents who generally land on top of every "Greatest Presidents" poll, are the ones who took an aggressive view of presidential power in responding to crises. http://www.amazon.com/Crisis-Command-History-Executive-Washington/dp/1607145553
(Yoo was a legal scholar who believed that presidents have very strong Constitutional powers, long before he became (in)famous in Bush's Office of Legal Counsel for his legal opinions on the War on Terror)
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 23, 2013, 07:11:24 AM
Woods isn't so much a libertarian as he is a white supremacist nut job. He's an active member of the League of the South, a white/southern nationalist group. Thomas DiLorenzo is the libertarian that I was referring to.

It's been awhile since I've read Woods' PIG Guide to American History, but I remember such idiotic tidbits as:

- Early America was settled almost exclusively by British settlers. Well, that's true if you exclude the Dutch, Swedes, Spanish, French and assorted latecomers.

- The Founding Fathers, who by and large advocated a democratic republic, were conservatives, in an era when the status quo was monarchy.

- Secession was legal because John Calhoun said so.

- The Civil War had nothing at all to do with slavery, because the average Northern and Southern soldier didn't care about slavery.

- He discusses Reconstruction as a long night of unprovoked, vindictive Yankee barbarism towards white Southerners, not mentioning the Ku Klux Klan or associated anti-black/Republican violence once.

- There were no German atrocities against Belgium in World War I. It was all Allied propaganda. (The people of Leuven would love to hear that!)

- The US had no reason to get involved in World War II. Nazi Germany wasn't a threat to anyone, and the Soviet Union was worse. Let alone Japan.

- Korea was the first time American troops had been sent abroad without a Declaration of War. Ignore the Barbary Pirate Wars, the Boxer Rebellion or our constant interventions in Latin America I suppose.
 
- Brown Vs. Board of Education was an egregious, unnecessary case of judicial activism. Dredd Scott and Plessey Vs. Ferguson, however, apparently were just fine.

- Joe McCarthy was a great American hero.

So fuck Mr. Woods. He's a pathetic charlatan ideologue with zero grasp of history or common sense.

As for DiLorenzo, I'd best not say anything or I'd be writing a book. >:D
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 23, 2013, 07:18:13 AM
haha well as I said I never read any of Woods's books, I just saw a couple of his articles and videos. I do think that there is certain school of libertarianism that, while I agree with their economic views, lives in a fantasy world when it comes to foreign policy. Some of those guys from the Von Mises Institute are more than a little nuts.
who was behind those Ron Paul newsletters, besides Ron Paul? I heard a little bit of chatter about the possibility that it may have been Lew Rockwell.


Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 23, 2013, 07:26:01 AM
Well, true. I'm all for small government but one must make allowances for the real world rather than dwelling on pure theory. I have a friend who's obsessed with Ayn Rand and he can't get it through his head that the literal application of her ideas would be unworkable.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 23, 2013, 07:48:29 AM
Well, true. I'm all for small government but one must make allowances for the real world rather than dwelling on pure theory. I have a friend who's obsessed with Ayn Rand and he can't get it through his head that the literal application of her ideas would be unworkable.

I haven't read Rand's works, but I think a literal application of capitalism would be more than workable.

But not having a standing army? That would be suicidal.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 23, 2013, 07:51:46 AM
Do you have real-world evidence to back up this assertion? Also, define "work."
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 23, 2013, 07:59:20 AM
firstly, absence of evidence isn't evidence of absence.

secondly, we definitely used to have a more capitalistic economy in the 1800's. and other countries had more capitalistic economies as well, and survived very well (eg. with private banking and no Federal Reserve system). The price of goods is determined by the free market, and there is no reason why the price of money should not be determined by the free market, but by a few people  at the Fed. Here is a debate I was involved in arranging, entitled "Is the Federal Reserve System Broken?" http://blip.tv/twoway-street/is-the-federal-reserve-system-broken-2402923 George Selgin is one of the foremost scholars on Banking)

there aren't any truly capitalist societies today, but in general, gov't regulation keeps growing. It's natural that as time goes by, politicians will try to increase rather than decrease their power.

As for a capitalist economy being "workable," it means such an economy would be more moral, more free, and more prosperous for everyone, from those with the most skills/abilities/intelligence/education to those with the least
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: drinkanddestroy on January 23, 2013, 08:05:59 AM
alright, you can get the last word, I'm done here. This thread has strayed much further into politics than what I am interested in ;)
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 23, 2013, 08:11:14 AM
Quote
As for a capitalist economy being "workable," it means such an economy would be more moral, more free, and more prosperous for everyone, from those with the most skills/abilities/intelligence/education to those with the least

Or it would lead to massive corporate corruption, manipulation/control of government by special interests and drastic economic stratification between rich and poor. As is certainly the case today. The fallacy here is reflexively assuming people in government = bad and corrupt and people in business = good and moral, a formulation I can't abide.

I'm not sure how much I'd laud the "freedom" of the 1800s either. Do you really want to go back to the days of six day workweeks, $1 a day paychecks, the company store and Pinkertons machine-gunning strikers? I guess some would.
Title: Re: Do American ever remember the loss and sacrifice of the Civil war...
Post by: Groggy on January 23, 2013, 08:12:50 AM
Anyway, to get back on topic I've just started Shelby Foote's The Civil War: A Narrative. Three volumes of around 800-900 pages each. Considered a must-read by almost everyone yet I haven't read it up until now.