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A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War Most Americans consider Abraham Lincoln to be the greatest president in history. His legend as the Great Emancipator has grown to mythic proportions as hundreds of books, a national holiday, and a monument in Washington, D.C., extol his heroism and martyrdom. But what if most everything you knew about Lincoln A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War Most Americans consider Abraham Lincoln to be the greatest president in history. His legend as the Great Emancipator has grown to mythic proportions as hundreds of books, a national holiday, and a monument in Washington, D.C., extol his heroism and martyrdom. But what if most everything you knew about Lincoln were false? What if, instead of an American hero who sought to free the slaves, Lincoln were in fact a calculating politician who waged the bloodiest war in american history in order to build an empire that rivaled Great Britain's? In The Real Lincoln, author Thomas J. DiLorenzo uncovers a side of Lincoln not told in many history books and overshadowed by the immense Lincoln legend. Through extensive research and meticulous documentation, DiLorenzo portrays the sixteenth president as a man who devoted his political career to revolutionizing the American form of government from one that was very limited in scope and highly decentralized—as the Founding Fathers intended—to a highly centralized, activist state. Standing in his way, however, was the South, with its independent states, its resistance to the national government, and its reliance on unfettered free trade. To accomplish his goals, Lincoln subverted the Constitution, trampled states' rights, and launched a devastating Civil War, whose wounds haunt us still. According to this provacative book, 600,000 American soldiers did not die for the honorable cause of ending slavery but for the dubious agenda of sacrificing the independence of the states to the supremacy of the federal government, which has been tightening its vise grip on our republic to this very day. You will discover a side of Lincoln that you were probably never taught in school—a side that calls into question the very myths that surround him and helps explain the true origins of a bloody, and perhaps, unnecessary war.


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A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War Most Americans consider Abraham Lincoln to be the greatest president in history. His legend as the Great Emancipator has grown to mythic proportions as hundreds of books, a national holiday, and a monument in Washington, D.C., extol his heroism and martyrdom. But what if most everything you knew about Lincoln A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War Most Americans consider Abraham Lincoln to be the greatest president in history. His legend as the Great Emancipator has grown to mythic proportions as hundreds of books, a national holiday, and a monument in Washington, D.C., extol his heroism and martyrdom. But what if most everything you knew about Lincoln were false? What if, instead of an American hero who sought to free the slaves, Lincoln were in fact a calculating politician who waged the bloodiest war in american history in order to build an empire that rivaled Great Britain's? In The Real Lincoln, author Thomas J. DiLorenzo uncovers a side of Lincoln not told in many history books and overshadowed by the immense Lincoln legend. Through extensive research and meticulous documentation, DiLorenzo portrays the sixteenth president as a man who devoted his political career to revolutionizing the American form of government from one that was very limited in scope and highly decentralized—as the Founding Fathers intended—to a highly centralized, activist state. Standing in his way, however, was the South, with its independent states, its resistance to the national government, and its reliance on unfettered free trade. To accomplish his goals, Lincoln subverted the Constitution, trampled states' rights, and launched a devastating Civil War, whose wounds haunt us still. According to this provacative book, 600,000 American soldiers did not die for the honorable cause of ending slavery but for the dubious agenda of sacrificing the independence of the states to the supremacy of the federal government, which has been tightening its vise grip on our republic to this very day. You will discover a side of Lincoln that you were probably never taught in school—a side that calls into question the very myths that surround him and helps explain the true origins of a bloody, and perhaps, unnecessary war.

30 review for The Real Lincoln: A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War

  1. 5 out of 5

    Amora

    Abraham Lincoln is considered to be the most revered president in American history by historians, but why? DiLorenzo asks this same question and presents us with a different portrait of Lincoln. In his political life Lincoln jailed journalists and went after the press, deported a former Congressman who criticized him, tried to pass legislation to bar free blacks from entering his state, harshly criticized abolitionists, waged war on civilians in the South, suspended habeas corpus, and advocated Abraham Lincoln is considered to be the most revered president in American history by historians, but why? DiLorenzo asks this same question and presents us with a different portrait of Lincoln. In his political life Lincoln jailed journalists and went after the press, deported a former Congressman who criticized him, tried to pass legislation to bar free blacks from entering his state, harshly criticized abolitionists, waged war on civilians in the South, suspended habeas corpus, and advocated barring blacks from obtaining citizenship. All of DiLorenzo’s citations are scholarly and well-known among historians.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    Eleven chapters of, how shall I put this mildly, bovine waste. This book was urged upon my by one who found it compelling. Finally, after a century and a half of myth-based pseudo-history propping up the image of "King Lincoln", he told me, comes Thomas J. DiLorenzo, an economist with a book exposing the "truth" about not-so-honest Abe. I'll admit to skepticism. And I'll even admit that I had no real desire to read The Real Lincoln. Whenever I'm faced with a conflict between mainstream and fringe, Eleven chapters of, how shall I put this mildly, bovine waste. This book was urged upon my by one who found it compelling. Finally, after a century and a half of myth-based pseudo-history propping up the image of "King Lincoln", he told me, comes Thomas J. DiLorenzo, an economist with a book exposing the "truth" about not-so-honest Abe. I'll admit to skepticism. And I'll even admit that I had no real desire to read The Real Lincoln. Whenever I'm faced with a conflict between mainstream and fringe, the burden of proof is on fringe to convince me that the mainstream is incorrect. It can be done. But when common sense and logic side with the mainstream, it is difficult - as I think that it should be - to convince me that the mainstream is wrong. I felt it was highly unlikely that DiLorenzo could shift my viewpoint. Time passed but the comments kept coming. You might be surprised how often our sixteenth president can make it into everyday conversation. The comments traced the roots of America's generally bad state of nearly everything to Abraham Lincoln. And the source backing the comments was Thomas DiLorenzo. Then fate intervened. I saw an advertisement alongside an article that I was reading on a news site - I don't recall ever having paid attention to one before. The advertisement was for a book by Dennis W. Brandt called Shattering the Truth: The Slandering of Abraham Lincoln. I went to Amazon and pulled up a copy of Brandt's book and previewed the Preface. Lo and behold Brandt was talking about DiLorenzo. And his book was a direct reply to DiLorenzo's works, including The Real Lincoln, and seemed to be a document-based, irrefutable, refutation. Brandt, I suspected, had taken the time to do the work necessary to prove the truth of the mainstream in opposition to the fringe. I ordered it immediately. I knew that I would read The Real Lincoln and Shattering the Truth together but, hoping to keep as open a mind as possible under the circumstances, I decided to read DiLorenzo first and Brandt second, instead of reading them side by side. Even without Brandt's help, I found DiLorenzo unconvincing. Throughout The Real Lincoln, DiLorenzo discounts any historian who disagrees with him and lauds those who agree. He takes some bits and pieces from original sources and cuts and pastes them out of context. He alternately holds Lincoln to modern racial sensibilities and downplays the evils of slavery as irrelevant to the cause - or even a cause - of the Civil War. And, most glaringly, he writes from an absolutist standpoint. There is no room for nuance and no shades of gray. And there is certainly no room for historical context. DiLorenzo's logic is often faulty but, at times, his points sound convincing. Many such points, however, rely on assumptions without footnotes or any other proof. But, as Brandt points out, even if the assumptions were footnoted, DiLorenzo's use of sources isn't always (or even often) reliable. DiLorenzo uses The Real Lincoln as part of his broader effort to trash the image of Lincoln for refusing to allow the Confederacy to secede, for doing so not to save the Union but to consolidate absolute power and riches in the hands of a few and oppress the God-given liberties of all Americans. In a vacuum and unchecked, I fear, DiLorenzo's efforts could succeed. Thankfully, we don't live in a vacuum. Check DiLorenzo's sources, and check his sources' sources. Or, if you don't have time, as I didn't, feel free to consult Shattering the Truth. Dennis Brandt has done yeoman's work for us all. If you're interested in a different opinion on Abraham Lincoln, The Real Lincoln is right for you. But if you want that different view to be honest, accurate, or based in reality - as I think something with the word "real" in its title should be, look elsewhere - almost anywhere elsewhere would be better.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Christopher Saunders

    History as ignorant rant. DiLorenzo portrays Lincoln as the peer of Hitler and Stalin, gleefully distorting history whether through misquotation, misrepresentation or outright lying. He claims, for instance, the Emancipation Proclamation did not free a single slave: he ignores that the Union controlled large swaths of the Confederacy by the time it was issued. The 13th Amendment, where slavery was permanently ended through legal, constitutional methods? Not mentioned once. He pretends the war is History as ignorant rant. DiLorenzo portrays Lincoln as the peer of Hitler and Stalin, gleefully distorting history whether through misquotation, misrepresentation or outright lying. He claims, for instance, the Emancipation Proclamation did not free a single slave: he ignores that the Union controlled large swaths of the Confederacy by the time it was issued. The 13th Amendment, where slavery was permanently ended through legal, constitutional methods? Not mentioned once. He pretends the war isn't about slavery by ignoring the Ordinances of Secession that explicitly identify slavery as the cause. He claims Lincoln ignored chances for "peaceful abolition" without specifying how this was possible. (Surely not through Confederate peace offers, predicated on preserving slavery in the South forever.) Instead he dredges up an 1861 tariff that, even if universally loathed by the South, didn't become law until AFTER Ft. Sumter and affected foreign rather than domestic trade. He claims universal loathing of the Emancipation Proclamation by citing editorials from Democratic newspapers. He claims tariffs unconstitutional because they're not specifically cited in the Constitution, yet he claims secession as a Constitutional right... because it isn't specifically cited in the Constitution. He rants about Reconstruction which, even if his depiction were accurate, happened AFTER Lincoln's death. Enough. Does Mr. DiLorenzo think we're all fools? If so, is it because he's looking for company?

  4. 5 out of 5

    zikafus

    Everything you know about Lincoln is wrong... trust me. This is another one of those books that takes a look at one of America's "heroes", tears off the mask of patriotic romanticism revealing a scoundrel beneath... Lincoln was likely the worst President in United States history... sound insane? Read the book... you'll be left with zero complaints... The Civil War initially had NOTHING to do with slavery (which would have been the only justifiable reason to wage it), it began, and was waged until Everything you know about Lincoln is wrong... trust me. This is another one of those books that takes a look at one of America's "heroes", tears off the mask of patriotic romanticism revealing a scoundrel beneath... Lincoln was likely the worst President in United States history... sound insane? Read the book... you'll be left with zero complaints... The Civil War initially had NOTHING to do with slavery (which would have been the only justifiable reason to wage it), it began, and was waged until Gettysburg on Lincoln's agenda to centralize federal power thus rewriting the Constitution. Not until after Gettysburg with the threat of Great Britain and France joining in the confederate cause did Lincoln produce his ingenious (in some sense) emancipation proclamation in hopes of generating a slave rebellion in the South. What they didn't teach us in schools was the North as Tocqueville mentioned was likely more racist than the south, and upon learning that the cause of the Civil War was not about preserving the Union but about freeing the slaves they rioted in Washington. Not to mention that Lincoln had just become the first US President to enlist a draft... this too did not please the racist northerners who opposed the new cause of the north. Considering the fact that the provision for succession was built into the Constitution, and that Lincoln brought armies against Southern civilians, and that the Geneva Convention had just been ratified, Lincoln was the first American President to commit genocide against his own people, on a scale 3% of the population in the South. While I'm sure some of you will be up in arms upon hearing this new info... after reading the book which presents the evidence, you will have no doubt Lincoln was a scoundrel.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Christopher

    Why was the United States the only country in the world to fight a war to end slavery? Because the war wasn't about slavery. Like all other wars, it was fought over money and power. Lincoln, the American Hitler, was the man who single-handedly shredded the Constitution and fathered "Big Government." The "Church of Lincoln" has distorted facts and history to paint a picture of Lincoln in total contradiction of his real self and motives. Fortunately, this author demolishes these falsehoods with simple Why was the United States the only country in the world to fight a war to end slavery? Because the war wasn't about slavery. Like all other wars, it was fought over money and power. Lincoln, the American Hitler, was the man who single-handedly shredded the Constitution and fathered "Big Government." The "Church of Lincoln" has distorted facts and history to paint a picture of Lincoln in total contradiction of his real self and motives. Fortunately, this author demolishes these falsehoods with simple logic, contextual arguments with respect to the Constitution, racism, and politics of the time. Educate yourself on the real story of Lincoln, not a saint-like emancipator but a blood-thirsty, ruthless dictator. Learn about the avoidable tragedy and the victims of Lincoln's ambition: the slaves, the citizens, and the transformation of the United States from a Republic to an imperialistic tyranny. As well, this book makes extensive endnotes to the direct reference materials so everything is open to verification by the reader. This book was a real eye-opener.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Nebuchadnezzar

    Not so much a history or biography as an apologetic for the mythos of the Lost Cause of the Confederacy. DiLorenzo is correct in arguing that Lincoln and the North in general were not virtuous and sinless moral crusaders. That cartoon history is the stuff of pop culture and grade-school history textbooks. DiLorenzo, though, uses this as a straw man to bat down as if it were actually representative of real historical scholarship, thus creating a classic false dichotomy in which Lincoln is either Not so much a history or biography as an apologetic for the mythos of the Lost Cause of the Confederacy. DiLorenzo is correct in arguing that Lincoln and the North in general were not virtuous and sinless moral crusaders. That cartoon history is the stuff of pop culture and grade-school history textbooks. DiLorenzo, though, uses this as a straw man to bat down as if it were actually representative of real historical scholarship, thus creating a classic false dichotomy in which Lincoln is either a romanticized, mythologized figure or a bloodthirsty and power-hungry dictator. It would not be quite right to say the sourcing is sloppy -- dishonest is the word for it. From the beginning of the book, DiLorenzo goes about constructing Lincoln the Raving White Supremacist Lunatic. Any countervailing evidence is omitted. It's easy to spin this straw Lincoln from selective quotation. To be blunt, some of what Lincoln wrote on race would be indistinguishable from a Klan member today. To tear these quotations out of their historical context, though, is a cheap rhetorical sleight-of-hand known in history-speak as "presentism" (or "the historian's fallacy," if you're a fan of David Hackett Fischer). DiLorenzo commits this by using said quotes to effectively deny that Lincoln may have had even a hint of virtuous intent when it came to his position on slavery. The arc of the book isn't anything new. The evangelists for the Lost Cause have been peddling this propaganda since the end of the Civil War. All the classic chestnuts are here -- states' rights, downplaying of slavery, the North "provoking" the South into war, etc. Nothing anyone familiar with Civil War scholarship hasn't seen before. The book only has value if you're a collector of Civil War memorabilia or Lost Cause pseudoscholarship. Otherwise, don't expect to find something resembling history here, it's the same old Passion Play. More on the Lost Cause: http://www.georgiaencyclopedia.org/ng... http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/reconstr... Lincoln's views on race and slavery in context: http://illinoisissues.uis.edu/feature... http://www.theroot.com/views/was-linc...

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    Disturbing book. The states had a right to secede from the union. This was accepted at the time. Constitutional amendments were proposed to prevent the right of secession. The right of secession is in fact a key to controlling the powers of a central government. Lincoln entered the war without congressional approval, calling it a "rebellion". He blockaded the south, something that could only be done against a country with which we were at war. He suspended the writ of Habeas Corpus without approv Disturbing book. The states had a right to secede from the union. This was accepted at the time. Constitutional amendments were proposed to prevent the right of secession. The right of secession is in fact a key to controlling the powers of a central government. Lincoln entered the war without congressional approval, calling it a "rebellion". He blockaded the south, something that could only be done against a country with which we were at war. He suspended the writ of Habeas Corpus without approval from Congress. The Supreme Court said that this was not constitutional, but Lincoln ignored it. Lincoln then took control of the newspapers, imprisoning without trial on the order of 13,000 people. People who voiced opposition to him. The emancipation proclamation was not declared until 1863 when the war was not going well for the "Union". The slaves were only freed in states not then occupied by the union. The Northern armies, as is well documented, plundered the southern countryside: destroying homes, killing innocent women and children, killing livestock and burning crops. All this to save the Union. All this against his own people. Lincoln was The Great Centralizer. With him began the American Empire. This was continued after the Civil War with Manifest Destiny and the destruction of the Indian Nations.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Nicholas

    Some weeks back I was in an online discussion about good Lincoln biographies. The book that received the most mentions was The Real Lincoln: A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War, by Thomas DiLorenzo. Some brief internet searching revealed that the book is quite controversial and has been charged with gross distortion of history. Nevertheless, I was morbidly curious enough to read it myself. DiLorenzo's stated goal is to get past the "myths" of Lincoln that he believes Some weeks back I was in an online discussion about good Lincoln biographies. The book that received the most mentions was The Real Lincoln: A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War, by Thomas DiLorenzo. Some brief internet searching revealed that the book is quite controversial and has been charged with gross distortion of history. Nevertheless, I was morbidly curious enough to read it myself. DiLorenzo's stated goal is to get past the "myths" of Lincoln that he believes is all too common and reveal the truth about the man. (p. 1-2) Yet despite his claims, DiLorenzo actually fails to uncover anything particularly novel about our sixteenth president. Instead, he does the opposite, and in so doing becomes the very type of historian he decries. He presents an abridged history, selectively using events, quotes, and supporting scholars to further his thesis driven work. In fact, DiLorenzo identifies nothing about Lincoln's views of race, southern succession, national unity, or methods of emancipation that is not addressed with greater care and context in Doris Kearns Goodwin's much superior Team of Rivals. In comparison, The Real Lincoln reminds me of a rushed college paper where all facts must be squeezed into the neatly predetermined premise and no argument should be examined too closely. Read the rest.

  9. 4 out of 5

    G.M. Burrow

    I've been critical of Lincoln for years, but this book shows (with meticulous research from the 18th and 19th centuries) just how much this man is to be condemned for his lies, his powermongering, and his tyranny. Historians have been stopping their ears to the truth for the past 150 years and more, and it's time to quit. It's time to remember our history, to know our Constitution, and to quit worshipping this beast of big government.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Britton Grier

    The central argument of the text is that Lincoln was acting unconstitutionally in waging war with the South (i.e. that states had the right to secede). For instance, in regards to the Emancipation Proclamation, DiLornenzo states it was a "war measure [...which] in reality, the president had no power to dictate such a thing to a state government." (p.37) If the southern states seceded (which all in the North and South admitted that they had as evidenced by the requirement that they accept amendme The central argument of the text is that Lincoln was acting unconstitutionally in waging war with the South (i.e. that states had the right to secede). For instance, in regards to the Emancipation Proclamation, DiLornenzo states it was a "war measure [...which] in reality, the president had no power to dictate such a thing to a state government." (p.37) If the southern states seceded (which all in the North and South admitted that they had as evidenced by the requirement that they accept amendments 13-15), then we can no longer discuss Abraham Lincoln's relationship with Southerners as a President to citizens. It becomes a matter of a Presidents relationship with enemy combatants in a foreign country. As far as Habeas Corpus, Article 1 of the Constitutions states that it may be suspended in times of war. What is unclear, and what the Supreme Court has not ruled on, is who is responsible for this suspension. More to the point, Lincoln's initial suspension was in suppression of a rebellion in Maryland that was hindering the war effort. Upon hearing of other Generals' carte blanche interpretation of his suspension, Lincoln orders them to stop using it as such. Context helps. I'll never argue in favor of a war. World War 2 in particular raises big questions about Just War ideology. But in a study of the blame for the Civil War, we must look at Fort Sumter and ask, would American's have approved or approve now of Lincoln admitting defeat and removing troops? DiLorenzo's argument is just that. In the face of a rebelling state, Lincoln should have done nothing. So i'll ask: should we analyze the constitutionality of the Civil War by looking at the Southern States as a foreign power or as states within the US that were attempting to nullify the Federal law and thus, the Supremacy Clause? Either way, the author's constitutionality argument makes no sense. The clearer violation of the Constitution would be to wish it away, both the duties and benefits of such an agreement, like the Southern states were attempting. ______________________________________ I was really starting to buy the author's alternative to war until P.277: "If this had happened [state-imposed, voluntary abolition] race relations in the South would not have been so irreparably poisoned as they were during Reconstruction. If the Republican Party had not used the ex-slaves as political pawns in the South and turned them against the whites, acts of violence against the ex-slaves and the institution of Jim Crow laws might never have happened." This is not just a bending of Reconstruction history, but proof that the author has no understanding of the period. Before, during, and after the Civil War, Southern whites were fearful of black freedom and sought ways to use the power of their state governments to stop it from coming to pass. There isn't a single shred of evidence to suggest that there was a Southern non-racist during the Civil War who becomes an advocate of Jim Crow laws due to the activities of the Freedman's Bureau or those of the Republican party. 200 years of institutional chattel slavery did more damage to race relations than 10 years of Reconstruction.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Tim Renshaw

    I'm a conservative that loves the U.S. Constitution. Was it a perfect document? Nope. Its largest failing was on the issue of slavery. Hideous that to get all the original states to sign on that this had to be left to a future generation to fix... and it needed it fixed. There, that should hopefully lay aside the kneejerk reaction to what follows as being because I'm some kind of racist. It is a shame that I need to even add in this caveat, but such are the current state of affairs in our politi I'm a conservative that loves the U.S. Constitution. Was it a perfect document? Nope. Its largest failing was on the issue of slavery. Hideous that to get all the original states to sign on that this had to be left to a future generation to fix... and it needed it fixed. There, that should hopefully lay aside the kneejerk reaction to what follows as being because I'm some kind of racist. It is a shame that I need to even add in this caveat, but such are the current state of affairs in our politically correct, racially charged American environment. As I understand it from many others, I was fortunate to have a history teacher in high school who correctly emphasized that the Civil War was NOT about slavery. So that part of this book didn't shock me. My high school days were back in 1980 just as President Reagan was coming into office and I was confused ever since by the fact that; 1) He rightly emphasized states rights 2) Spoke glowingly, as have all modern presidents, of Lincoln who at the very least, didn't believe the states had the right to secede. I've been confused by President Obama's glowing praise of Lincoln beyond the obvious slavery angle. Why does an extremely liberal Democrat relate himself so tightly to Lincoln? Lincoln was surely a conservative, small government, minimal regulation, states rights (whoops, strike one) guy? This issue of Lincoln restricting the states has been allowed to be so tied into the issue of slavery that to even voice this confusion aloud would get you shouted down. I recently asked a historian friend of mine about this confusion on my part and he recommended this book... ... and now I recommend this book! This is not an ad hominem haranguing against Lincoln. This is a history book with sources cited and a bibliography that would choke a horse. I'm not going to get into the specifics as anything I would quote here, you'll dismiss out of hand. If you value yourself a student of history at all, you at least owe it to yourself to read this book so you can properly attack it if you wish. Be prepared that Lincoln's defenders are on record acquiescing to the facts presented in The Real Lincoln. After reading this book and my belief that Obama is a smart man who knows exactly what he's doing in his policy and practice approaches to governance, I now understand why he loves Lincoln so much and it goes way, way beyond the Emancipation Proclamation (January 1863, Civil War erupts in April 1861 at Fort Sumter).

  12. 5 out of 5

    Monty

    This book raises some very uncomfortable questions and attempts to provide solid, documented answers to them... 1) What was the real goal of the Whig Party and Henry Clay who were the lifetime "mentors" of Abraham Lincoln? 2) Why is it that of all the many nations which emancipated their slaves between 1790 and 1880, the United States was the only country to fight a Civil War, involving the deaths of over a million people, to do so? 3) Why was it that there were no less than four secession crisis b This book raises some very uncomfortable questions and attempts to provide solid, documented answers to them... 1) What was the real goal of the Whig Party and Henry Clay who were the lifetime "mentors" of Abraham Lincoln? 2) Why is it that of all the many nations which emancipated their slaves between 1790 and 1880, the United States was the only country to fight a Civil War, involving the deaths of over a million people, to do so? 3) Why was it that there were no less than four secession crisis between 1800 and 1830, and no one contested their Constitutionality or legality except Abraham Lincoln, when he declared it impossible in 1860?...and engaged in a war to prevent it. 4) Why is Lincoln hailed as the great emancipator of the Black Man in America when he was still working feverishly to have Blacks colonized abroad in 1862, and he was a Senator when his home state forbade the emigration of any Black to the State of Illinois? The Emancipation Proclamation was a useless document. It freed slaves where the Federal Government had no power whatsoever, yet kept them in bondage in states and provinces loyal to the U.S. Government. 5) By eliminating the possibility of States to separate voluntarily from the Union, what kind of country and Government did Lincoln create by forcing the States to remain glued into an all-powerful nation-state by the coercion of milirary and political power? Secession was the last-gap weapon which could be used by the States to prevent the total usurpation of power by the Executive Branch. The Constitution and its writers said so. 6) What did Lincoln learn from his invasion of the South and the subsequent conquest which the government could use against the Native American peoples following the War? These and other uncomfortable questions are tackled by Thomas DiLorenzo in this fascinating revisionist view of our 16th President. DiLorenzo is a Libertarian economist who does not, in his own words, "worship at the Church of Lincoln." In the course of his research he has found that about 70 per cent of the works written about Lincoln amount to Hagiography rather than any critical analysis of the actions of the man throughout his lifetime.

  13. 4 out of 5

    DJ

    Author Thomas DiLorenzo is a scholar at the League of the South Institute. He is also listed as an ideologue to watch out for on the Southern Poverty Law Center website. It seems to me the book is part of a body of "scholarship" whose ultimate goal is for the South to secede again, and possibly to return to its antebellum social structure. Although no author should be wholly disregarded based on ad hominem attack alone, these facts likely influence my view of the book. It is not entirely worthles Author Thomas DiLorenzo is a scholar at the League of the South Institute. He is also listed as an ideologue to watch out for on the Southern Poverty Law Center website. It seems to me the book is part of a body of "scholarship" whose ultimate goal is for the South to secede again, and possibly to return to its antebellum social structure. Although no author should be wholly disregarded based on ad hominem attack alone, these facts likely influence my view of the book. It is not entirely worthless. Between suspiciously selective quotes and questionable logic you will find a few interesting, relevant, and often glossed-over bits of American history. Examples would include the suspension of habeas corpus under Lincoln, war crimes committed by Union generals, and wartime violations of the First Amendment. However, the book's merits are grossly overshadowed by the author's blatant bias and thinly supported arguments, which are present throughout the text.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jim

    The book is worth reading, but it leaves you wishing that it had been written by an author more intent on fleshing out the scholarship than one interested in bashing Lincoln. What are the actual statistics on how much of U.S. revenue was supplied by tariffs? Maybe a graph to show how this was split between the North and the South would have been useful. Could the author have spent a bit more time fleshing out the background of the 'American System' favored by Lincoln and his sponsors? There are The book is worth reading, but it leaves you wishing that it had been written by an author more intent on fleshing out the scholarship than one interested in bashing Lincoln. What are the actual statistics on how much of U.S. revenue was supplied by tariffs? Maybe a graph to show how this was split between the North and the South would have been useful. Could the author have spent a bit more time fleshing out the background of the 'American System' favored by Lincoln and his sponsors? There are interesting questions that the book raises, but fails to answer in a satisfying (non polemical) way. The Civil War was a disaster, and this book helps explain why... but there are many, many areas where the coverage is too shallow, and too polemical. The same material should be covered again in greater depth by someone without an obvious axe to grind.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Christopher

    This book made me want to blast Lincoln's face off of Mount Rushmore and desecrate his temple in Washington. He was a politician, who held illogical and tyrannical ideas, and he enforced his ideas upon the nation by force of war. He did more than any man to destroy the union of free and sovereign states that our Founding Fathers established. He was a racist Hamiltonian, and not the God that our public schools and politicians teach us to worship.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Dustin

    This book leaves no doubt in my mind that Lincoln is the worst president we have ever had. It is comedic reading through old history class books from grade school seeing just how misleading and downright wrong they are on the account of "honest" Abe.

  17. 5 out of 5

    David Robins

    DiLorenzo himself sums the book up well in his conclusion: "Despite an unspeakably bloody war, the demolition of constitutional liberties, and the conquest and subjugation of the South for twelve years after the war, Lincoln and his party still failed to completely destroy federalism and states' rights. Because the ideas were so ingrained in the American psyche, something of a revolt against centralized government authority occurred in the postwar years, personified by the presidency of Grover C DiLorenzo himself sums the book up well in his conclusion: "Despite an unspeakably bloody war, the demolition of constitutional liberties, and the conquest and subjugation of the South for twelve years after the war, Lincoln and his party still failed to completely destroy federalism and states' rights. Because the ideas were so ingrained in the American psyche, something of a revolt against centralized government authority occurred in the postwar years, personified by the presidency of Grover Cleveland, who vetoed the income tax and dozens of tariff bills. This temporarily slowed down the march toward the centralized, militaristic state that the founding fathers feared, but not for long." The thesis of the book, ably defended, appears to be the fact that Lincoln started a war with the Confederacy so that he could use the smokescreen of war to grab unconstitutional powers hitherto denied by strict constructionists: national "internal improvements" (subsidies to corporations favored by the mercantilist Republican party, a clone of the former Whigs, which many states had constitutionally banned), imprisonment of any opposition including hundreds of newspaper editors, without trial, and eventual domination of the anti-tariff free-trade South and a return to a system where the agrarian South paid most of the taxes while the benefits accrued to the north. This war against Southern independence did not save the union, but destroyed it as a voluntary compact of states.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Brown

    This book was one that I had to force myself to finish, which isn't usual for me. I have been reading books that give both favorable and critical assessments of historical figures in recent years in an effort to find a balanced view. While I make no claim to being a Civil War authority, I have been reading about this subject for a number of years and have found numberous questionable assertions in "The Real Lincoln", such as Lincoln wanted a war just so he could establish a strong central govern This book was one that I had to force myself to finish, which isn't usual for me. I have been reading books that give both favorable and critical assessments of historical figures in recent years in an effort to find a balanced view. While I make no claim to being a Civil War authority, I have been reading about this subject for a number of years and have found numberous questionable assertions in "The Real Lincoln", such as Lincoln wanted a war just so he could establish a strong central government, a national bank and subsidize internal improvement projects. This is a 279 page rant against the evils of a powerful central government. Mr. DiLorenzo seems to be judging Lincoln by 21st century standards, instead if viewing him as a man in the mid 19th century. Mr. DiLorenzo also makes numerous sweeping statements without referencing his sources, and is clearly a Confederate apologist. If you read this book, be sure to read others that discuss the issues that led up to the Civil War.

  19. 5 out of 5

    John

    This is DiLorenzo's first book on Lincoln, and is better than his second, Lincoln Unmasked. The historical context in this book is more complete than his other book. Lincoln and his legacy are highly esteemed, but DiLorenzo demonstrates that Lincoln's presidency were ruinous to the nation and left a legacy of centralized power, leaving the states and the people unable to check federal power. Lincoln, rather than being the Great Emancipator, was the Great Centralizer. He was also a racist who wor This is DiLorenzo's first book on Lincoln, and is better than his second, Lincoln Unmasked. The historical context in this book is more complete than his other book. Lincoln and his legacy are highly esteemed, but DiLorenzo demonstrates that Lincoln's presidency were ruinous to the nation and left a legacy of centralized power, leaving the states and the people unable to check federal power. Lincoln, rather than being the Great Emancipator, was the Great Centralizer. He was also a racist who worked toward emigrating blacks (free and slave) to Liberia, Haiti, and Central America. He had no desire to free the slaves, except as a political tool. I could go on, but if you're interested in learning the truth about Lincoln, this is a good place to start. Just be ready to open your mind to the fact that Lincoln and his legacy are a stain upon American history, not the blessing that most pretend it to be.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Bliss Tew

    In 2008 I read this book. It's important that Americans take a hard look at the man behind the war that most changed America, the War Between the States, that so centralized power in the federal government. Lincoln, a Whig, then a Republican, was a believer in protectionism for his cronies in big business enterprises such as railroads. Understanding the fact that Secession was a "right" derived from the Declaration of Independence, but not an American Right recognized by Abraham Lincoln, sets th In 2008 I read this book. It's important that Americans take a hard look at the man behind the war that most changed America, the War Between the States, that so centralized power in the federal government. Lincoln, a Whig, then a Republican, was a believer in protectionism for his cronies in big business enterprises such as railroads. Understanding the fact that Secession was a "right" derived from the Declaration of Independence, but not an American Right recognized by Abraham Lincoln, sets the stage for a bloody war pitting American against American, that didn't have to happen. The Southern view of Lincoln was smothered by those who won the war. After a long series of books showing the mythical "Great American" side of Lincoln, it's good to read one that uncovers the President who violated the constitution, violated the right of secession, and brought about a war on American soil.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Monica Perez

    I give it a three instead of a four because I found it somewhat sensationalistic but it really is a must read. From here you can conduct a more academic investigation but it helps you shake off the brainwashing of the history that was written by the winners.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Porter Broyles

    Before I present my I review, I think it is important to tell you where I stand on Lincoln: Lincoln's image and reputation are enhanced because of the final accomplishment of the Civil War. At the end of the war, he successfully freed the slaves and became an instant martyr. People's memories of him thus recall the best while forgetting his questionable actions. Don't get me wrong, he was undoubtedly one of the best and most important presidents we ever have. He was a shrewd politician who was of Before I present my I review, I think it is important to tell you where I stand on Lincoln: Lincoln's image and reputation are enhanced because of the final accomplishment of the Civil War. At the end of the war, he successfully freed the slaves and became an instant martyr. People's memories of him thus recall the best while forgetting his questionable actions. Don't get me wrong, he was undoubtedly one of the best and most important presidents we ever have. He was a shrewd politician who was often underestimated. He knew how to work the system. But he was NOT the saint that most people believe him to be. Lincoln did many things that were questionable if not down right objectionable. His presidency was in ruins and if not for key military victories shortly before the 1864 election he would have been voted out of office in a landslide. Knowing and understanding his fallacies does not undermine his importance, but can be used to enhance the humanity and accomplishments. In other words, I could have been the target audience for this book---a person who does see faults with Lincoln and recognizes that he made major mistakes. That being said, this is one of the few books that I could not finish. The book is not an objective history, but an assault. The author makes a lot of unsupported claims and allegations---many of which are (IMO) outright lies. I say this because I do not believe they are simple mistakes or errors. Let me give you an example. Thomas J. Dilorenzo states that at no point did Lincoln ever attempt to stop the South from seceding by offering to compensate the South for its slaves. In his introduction, he writes, "Chapter 3 poses a key question that no one has address in much detail: Why didn't Lincoln do what much of the rest of the world did in the nineteenth century and end slavery peacefully through compensated emancipation?" Chapter 3 basically is a treatise on how Lincoln could have averted the Civil War had he only offered to compensate the Souths for their slaves. This omits the fact that the South didn't want to be compensated, they saw slavery as part of their heritage and way of life. In 1860, they weren't interested in compensation. By 1860, the path towards secession was too far along to avoid it. (The claim also undermines the Southern claim that secession was not about slavery, but state's rights---an issue I suspect DeLorenzo would argue, but not here because it doesn't support the book's premise.) The claim further omits the fact that Lincoln was not in a position to make this offer prior to the secession of the South. Lincoln was not president, but president-elect. By the time Lincoln was president, 7 states had already seceded and forces in other states were trying (and failing) to get them to secede. This also ignores Lincoln's long held belief that the Federal Government had no authority to nullify slavery within specific states. Since he did not believe the Federal Government had such authority, he was a proponent of gradual and compensated emancipation. DiLorenzo ignores the fact that in an attempt to avert secession, Seward pushed through the 13th amendment. Not the 13th Amendment we have today, but the one guaranteeing the right to slavery (it is STILL a pending amendment only needing to be ratified by the states!) DeLorenzo either didn't know or chose not to recognize certain events. In 1861, Lincoln pushed for a bill in Delaware to offer compensated emancipation. When the slaves were freed in DC, he insisted that the slaveholders be compensated. As for the slaveholders in rebellious states, he believed that compensated emancipation would settle the issue, "if we have to fight this war till the South is subjugated, then I think we shall be justified in freeing the slaves without compensation. But in any settlement arrived at before they force things to that extremity, is it not right and fair that we should make payment for the slaves?”. Horace Greeley, not a friend of the Lincoln administration, wrote, Lincoln "recommends the passage of a joint resolve proffering National cooperation and pecuniary aid to each and every States which shall see fit to inaugurate the Abolition of Slavery within its borders." Lincoln believed that the cost to compensate slave owners would cost less than continuing the war. If the war ended just 87 days earlier due to compensation, he believed, the savings would be worth it. In short, by claiming that Lincoln was never made this offer and insinuating that he could have head off the secession of the South, DiLorenzo stretches credulity past the breaking point for a person writing a contrarian view of Lincoln. I might be able to accept such an error from a non-Lincoln scholar, but somebody who has written multiple books on Lincoln should know better or appears to be obfuscating the facts. Furthermore, DiLorenzo often makes statements of fact which are really opinions. He will state an opinion as fact and then attack the straw-man. He uses way too many quotes without attributing sources or putting one or two key words in a quotations to make it look like Lincoln or a cited source is saying something, but without any context around the quoted words. For example, "Lincoln's very motivation for entering politics in 1832 was government subsidies for 'internal improvements', or, in modern terminology, 'corporate welfare'" (pg 73). Or "Some sixteen years later, Andrew Jackson vetoed numerous internal improvement bills, referring to such bills, most of which were sponsored by Henry Clay, as 'saddling upon the government the losses of unsuccessful private speculation'" (no citation for quote on page 81). He often says various authorities/experts make claims, but he uses these citations in broad strokes. In one place he cites "McPherson is equally confused on this point. He approvingly writes of an 'astonishing blitz of laws, most of them passed within the span of one year' during the Lincoln administration as creating a 'capitalist revolution' and a blueprint for modern America' of which 'Lincoln was one of the principle architects' [...] The 'blitz of laws' that McPherson refers was decidedly anticapitalistic {sic}. [...] What they do achieve is further politiciation of economic decision making a greater centralization of political power. If there is any one lesson that we should have learned from the twentieth century, it is that the more politicized an economy becomes, the less economic opportunity it produces for ordinary citizens" (p 60-61). I read about half of the book before I finally gave up. This book is entirely too jaded.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jeff Shelnutt

    DiLorenzo dares to touch one of America’s sacred cows. There is an astonishingly number of books about Lincoln (some 15,000). And I would venture to say the vast majority exalt the man, especially if they are consistent with the image I was fed in school. The author sets forth to de-mythicize the legends, to present Lincoln using Lincoln’s own words and actions. So I’m sure for the simple reason that this book was definitely more of a critique than an endorsement of the man, DiLorenzo came under DiLorenzo dares to touch one of America’s sacred cows. There is an astonishingly number of books about Lincoln (some 15,000). And I would venture to say the vast majority exalt the man, especially if they are consistent with the image I was fed in school. The author sets forth to de-mythicize the legends, to present Lincoln using Lincoln’s own words and actions. So I’m sure for the simple reason that this book was definitely more of a critique than an endorsement of the man, DiLorenzo came under a lot of fire. Some of these rebuttals he addresses in the Afterword. And I’ll admit the author was writing from a libertarian bias. But all authors write from a bias. There is no such thing as completely objective writing or reporting. It doesn’t concern me that an author has an opinion; I’m interested in how accurately the author presents the facts, and then how he chooses to interpret them. It’s hard to argue with quotes directly from Lincoln speeches and letters, not to mention his actions. In brief, DiLorenzo posits that Lincoln was not interested in ending slavery for moral reasons. The Emancipation Proclamation was a political expedient that had no actual effect on reality. Lincoln wrote, “My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it…” Perhaps Lincoln is being taken out of context? Perhaps so. But this isn't the only evidence the author offers to support his claims concerning Lincoln's "real" views on slavery. A question that arises is why did America have to go through a horrific civil war to end slavery (if the war was indeed about slavery)? The British Empire ended slavery in its colonies peacefully, as did many other countries. This certainly makes me wonder if DiLorenzo isn't on to something when he documents Lincoln's "Hamiltonian" agenda for the nation, and the evidence pointing toward the war furthering this particular political and economic ideology. Consider this excerpt: "Lincoln thought of himself as the heir to the Hamiltonian political tradition, which sought a much more centralized governmental system, one that would plan economic development with corporate subsidies financed by protectionist tariffs and the printing of money by the central government." This is exactly what many in the south (and north) opposed when it came to Lincoln's political aims. Implementing such an agenda would harm the south economically and thus the matter of state's rights became a primary factor. Also, as has even been acknowledged by pro-Lincoln scholars, Lincoln simply ignored the Constitution under the pretense of “war powers,” effectively making himself a dictator. He imprisoned his political enemies, shut down opposition newspapers, and abolished habeas corpus, among other gross abuses of his position. This has been justified by historians pointing out that Lincoln was a “Benevolent Dictator.” People who sat suffering in filthy prisons for years because they dared to speak out against their (elected) leader would probably beg to differ. DiLorenzo seeks to demonstrate that Lincoln invented and perpetuated the myth of the States being created out of the Union. Pre-Lincoln American history does seem to support this. There is evidence that the states took for granted the right to secede from the Union, and could abolish the Union if they saw fit. I’m not out to demonize Lincoln. He stands and falls on his own merits or lack thereof. If he actually did all that mainline history credits him with, that would be great. As to whether or not the author picked and chose only those quotations of Lincoln's that support his theories, I can't say. I would be interested to read a book that addresses the same issues from a different perspective before coming to any definite conclusions. However, I feel Dilorenzo does us a historical service in pointing out inconsistencies that arise between the myth and the man.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Will Ridenour

    This is an excellent book for folks who like history. DiLorenzo is an economist who teaches at a Maryland University, and a civil war history buff. His research on the war prompted him to write this. It tells of the real reasons the war was started and depicts ,what he claims to be, the honest, unexaggerated or omitted portrait of Abe Lincoln: A man who was apathetic about slavery at best and more concerned with consolidating government power. From his presidential debate speeches ( that were loa This is an excellent book for folks who like history. DiLorenzo is an economist who teaches at a Maryland University, and a civil war history buff. His research on the war prompted him to write this. It tells of the real reasons the war was started and depicts ,what he claims to be, the honest, unexaggerated or omitted portrait of Abe Lincoln: A man who was apathetic about slavery at best and more concerned with consolidating government power. From his presidential debate speeches ( that were loaded with White Supremacist rhetoric), to his siding with the Corwin amendment that would've had made slavery irrevocable, as long the south agreed to stay part of the union and endure unjust taxation and tariffs, to his instigating of the event that precipitated the war, it shows Lincoln for the federal tyrant he was. Dilorenzo explains how Lincoln never even tried for peaceful abolition like almost every country in the world had done before us because slavery was not his real concern. It iterates the racism that was so rife in the north, as well as the heavy opposition of the north to the war and his way of dealing with it: trashing amendments such as free speech and habeas corpus by shutting down antiwar publications and newspapers and turning America into a police state. It tells of his detention centers where he took draft dodgers and subversive people, and gives a thorough breakdown of the emancipation proclamation (which wasn't issued until two years into the war) which effectively didn't free any southern slaves but was made as a political and military tactic to give the Union footing in southern towns where they had no business being, to terrorize and loot civilians. All this, he explains, was for the purpose of bolstering and augmenting central government power...and for $ of course. In the end, you'll be amazed and saddened to learn that the president that is sold to us as the best (because he did so much to strengthen the state), is really arguably the worst; a president who didn't really free the slaves and got 600,000 people killed over taxes and protectionist tariffs for big business. It is not one sided either. Dilorenzo gives countless historical citations and cross-referencing to Pro-Lincoln books which he systematically discredits, exposing the whole truths and facts that they whitewash. It is a revealing and devastating read.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Nathan

    The USA ceased to be a republic when Lincoln became president and became an empire. Every nation in the world that had slaves freed them peacefully. The USA was the only one that had a war to do so. If what was spent on the war had been spent to free the slaves, each slave would have had enough to own 40 acres of land. Lincoln was a white supremacist! 3 months after the treaty was signed with the south, he sent the army to wipe out the Sioux indians to make room for a railroad. Karl Marx sent Linc The USA ceased to be a republic when Lincoln became president and became an empire. Every nation in the world that had slaves freed them peacefully. The USA was the only one that had a war to do so. If what was spent on the war had been spent to free the slaves, each slave would have had enough to own 40 acres of land. Lincoln was a white supremacist! 3 months after the treaty was signed with the south, he sent the army to wipe out the Sioux indians to make room for a railroad. Karl Marx sent Lincoln fan mail. The war was all about tariffs. The federal government imposed high trade tariffs for imports to protect the corporations it most favored, which was a burden on the south because they were dependant on trade. They wanted to secede so they could have free trade. Lincoln then occupied their territory and maneuvered things so it looked like the south made the first offensive move. Then when he realized he was losing the war he did two things. First he made the emancipation proclamation, which was a brilliant political move to get international support. Then he waged war on civilians in the south. In the north Lincoln had anyone who opposed him arrested and held in prison without trial. One congressman from Dayton, OH named Valladingham opposed him on the floor of congress saying that what he was doing was unconstitutional. Valladingham was imprisoned and later exiled to Canadia. This is a pretty important book for me. I'm all scandalized.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Roger Causey

    How refreshing, a 21st century author willing to put facts before lies and myth knowing that the criticism will be blind, vicious, and cruel. If you think you know that the so called Civil War was fought to free the slaves and are not willing to believe the facts rather than accept the lies and myths then this is probably not the book for you. But if you realize that history is written by the victors sometimes with little regard to the facts then give this book a chance. DiLorenzo has researched How refreshing, a 21st century author willing to put facts before lies and myth knowing that the criticism will be blind, vicious, and cruel. If you think you know that the so called Civil War was fought to free the slaves and are not willing to believe the facts rather than accept the lies and myths then this is probably not the book for you. But if you realize that history is written by the victors sometimes with little regard to the facts then give this book a chance. DiLorenzo has researched his subject well and documents all his assertions with conclusive evidence. He lays out the reasons for the Southern States peaceful secession which was their constitutional right to do. Then he makes the case why Lincoln wanted war to force them to remain in the Union by military force. The undeniable facts are that Lincoln was not who you have been taught to believe he was. He was dishonest, a tyrant, a dictator, trampled the constitution, destroyed states rights, and created the monster Federal government that we all suffer under to this day. I agree with Douglas Goldstein’s review. This book should be a high school textbook or at least required reading.

  27. 5 out of 5

    K

    2.5 Stars. I find this to be the case with so many non-fiction books. They have a powerful start and then the book fades into repetition. About 170 pages in and I just couldn't go on. The first part of the book was fascinating, particularly focusing on the political climate and the events leading up to the Civil War. But he did such a good overview that by the time he got to really focusing on Lincoln, I felt like I had read it all before. I will say that I enjoy seeing Lincoln brought down to a 2.5 Stars. I find this to be the case with so many non-fiction books. They have a powerful start and then the book fades into repetition. About 170 pages in and I just couldn't go on. The first part of the book was fascinating, particularly focusing on the political climate and the events leading up to the Civil War. But he did such a good overview that by the time he got to really focusing on Lincoln, I felt like I had read it all before. I will say that I enjoy seeing Lincoln brought down to a more realistic portrayal. While, as you will note in my review below from a week ago, there are some obvious problems in his some of his arguments, a dissenting opinion can help bring to light some of our unrealistic expectations of our heroes. It is important to see them realistically so that we can realistically learn from them, not just their high points but their low points, too. *** I am not finished with it but I wanted to capture some of my thoughts before I forget them. This is a very interesting look into what Lincoln really stands for. It is quite accepted that he was racist, like much of his generation, but I didn't realize he supported mercantilism. It is also widely known that he suspended habeas corpus for the duration of the war but I didn't realize how many political prisoners were arrested without a trial. It is better to have a real understanding of our heroes, their flaws can teach us as much as anyone. I do have a couple problems with the book, besides its bias (which nearly all books have some bias), he seems myopic. He totally washes over the fact that the problem of slavery began with the Founding Fathers. Preferring to get the Constitution ratified than fight over the issue of slaver, the 3/5s compromise was established. Had Northern states relented and allowed all slaves to be counted, there would have been a precedent for them to be citizens, though obviously Southern states wanted to use slaves to bolster their numbers in a similar way to jerrymandering and other sorts of shenanigans. This compromise set the tone for the next century. Glossing over this makes Lincoln and his generation look like the culprits when really these were long standing problems. Another issue I have with the book is the contradiction when it comes to the author's stance of slavery vs secession. In one section he talks about the war being unnecessary because other countries ended slavery peacefully. Then he talks about Lincoln not wanting to end slavery. But then he supports the South's right to secession because they were afraid Lincoln would end slavery, and yet he already presented evidence that Lincoln wasn't going to do so. He then says slavery was on its way out (it probably was) based on the fact that other countries were ending it and most Southern citizens were not slave holders. Then he says it was artificially held in place because of the Fugitive Slave Act which he first makes it sound was unsupported in the North and then goes on to state that citizens in the North were as racist as those in the South and supported slavery. So which was it?

  28. 4 out of 5

    C.J. Ruby

    Nothing new here for "Lost Cause" southern apologists and Lincoln haters. A patchwork of circular logic and twisted contextualization. The war was about slavery. The heart of the states rights argument was for the south to maintain slavery. To deny that is to blind oneself to the truth of the Civil War. Lincoln wasn't a saint, those who revere him as one give ammunition to haters and twisted thinkers like DiLorenzo. Lincoln was a pragmatic politician who succeeded in the most difficult period of Nothing new here for "Lost Cause" southern apologists and Lincoln haters. A patchwork of circular logic and twisted contextualization. The war was about slavery. The heart of the states rights argument was for the south to maintain slavery. To deny that is to blind oneself to the truth of the Civil War. Lincoln wasn't a saint, those who revere him as one give ammunition to haters and twisted thinkers like DiLorenzo. Lincoln was a pragmatic politician who succeeded in the most difficult period of time in American history.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Joshua Horn

    A re evaluation of the traditional view of Lincoln as one of the greatest presidents in history, who preserved the union and freed the slaves. Instead we see him in his true character, racist and tyrant. Revealing and easy to read. I do think Dilorenzo does make some mistakes, not necessary in what he says, but in what he does not say. Although states rights were important, slavery did play a huge role in bringing the nation to wae

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kyle

    An excellent read. They should teach stuff like this in high school (that'll be the day, right?). Lincoln here is portrayed as he was - a flawed character and the natural evolution of Hamiltonians/Whigs along with their goals of centralization. This book paints the rolling snowball of government centralization as starting as soon as Lincoln "won" the war. State sovereignty and the constitution never quite meant the same thing after the Civil War. The smokescreen of slavery has been thoroughly de An excellent read. They should teach stuff like this in high school (that'll be the day, right?). Lincoln here is portrayed as he was - a flawed character and the natural evolution of Hamiltonians/Whigs along with their goals of centralization. This book paints the rolling snowball of government centralization as starting as soon as Lincoln "won" the war. State sovereignty and the constitution never quite meant the same thing after the Civil War. The smokescreen of slavery has been thoroughly debunked here and the important question is asked: "why not compensated emancipation?" Why could all of these other countries solve slavery peacefully but we had to go to war, losing over 600,000 of our citizens (assuming that's what we went to war for)? This is a book that asks all the right questions and illuminates with answers culled from what I'd assume are years of meticulous research and citation. Not everything in here is completely factually correct, but still, if you're open-minded and are willing to hear a side of history that isn't commonly espoused by the general American populace, give this a try. It's more than simple Confederate-sympathizing (that's a puerile strawman), it's an exercise in inquisition.

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