February 27, 2007

Not Quite a Dopey Letter, But Then Again ...

The Rev. John McDonald of Dover writes in to the News Journal comparing President Bush to the "Great Emancipator," Abraham Lincoln. While history obviously cannot yet adequately judge the current commander-in-chief, consider the points Rev. McDonald makes:

President Lincoln and President Bush show several remarkable similarities. Both showed courage and resolve in the face of an unpopular war. Both faced a Democratic party that drafted a declaration of the war as a failure. Both determined to conduct the war on military knowledge and not political jargon.

Both saw victory in the fiery trial of history. Both saw that the Democrats chose a legacy of defeat.

Both presidents faced a struggling war, wavering polls, and weak politicians. History tells how true patriots of the Union rose up and soundly defeated myopic politicians who sought to break the will of the people.

Both presidents faced pressure to cave, yet both would not let the freedom issue go. Both fear how Republicans will be destroyed. The slave owners then and al-Qaida now could cheer.

Actually, Rev., look at it this way: History now regards Abe Lincoln as one of, if not THE greatest presidents the United States has ever had. Why? Because he "saved" the Union. But at what cost? Bush-Haters would have been going absolutely beyond insane at the actions 'ol Abe took to defeat the secessionist South. He unilaterally suspended habeas corpus, a power clearly reserved only for Congress in the Constitution. Abe had asked rhetorically: If "all the laws, but one, [are] to go unexecuted, and the government itself to go to pieces, lest that one be violated?" In other words, Abe thought "most citizens would favor the suspension of habeas corpus over the destruction of the government, given the choice." But ... the "destruction of the government"? The United States certainly would have continued to exist, albeit without the sessionist states which desired to form their own, new, government.

Lincoln had little compunction about jailing political opponents and even members of the media who disagreed with him. He had Federal soldiers intimidating and taking into custody Democrat dissenters. Can you imagine if President Bush had attempted even a minute fraction of what Lincoln actually did if radical Muslim terrorists had, say, set off a dirty nuke in some American cit[ies]? Good Lord, the rage among the Bush-Haters would be at such a fever pitch that there would probably be several deaths due to brain anyeurisms. And unlike during most of the past, in this case these Haters would have a legitimate gripe.

Past Colossus opinions on Lincoln's offenses against the Constitution here, here and here, the last which includes this notable opinion by Delaware Watch's Dana Garrett:

I would say that we have fewer icons than we think. Interning the Japanese was a monstrous act as far as I am concerned. When Lincoln suspended habeas corpus, Supreme Court Justice Tawney overturned it claiming that Lincoln was worse than any despotic king in England had been. Lincoln's response? He simply disregarded the Court's ruling and even came close to having Justice Tawney himself arrested.

Be sure to read all of Garrett's comment on that post. It's notable because it's one of the few topics on which he and I actually agree.

Posted by Hube at February 27, 2007 03:39 PM | TrackBack

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