UPDATE July 1: Forbes has attempted to hide the original article. Here, however, is the cached copy. Mariotta (and his daughter!) “responds” to his critics on his personal page here. Updated HERE 7 July.
The ‘Lost Cause’ is alive and well at Forbes Magazine, on the eve of the 150th anniversary of the turning point of the Civil War — Gettysburg and Vicksburg on July 4, 1863.
The “Lost Cause” never dies; it just smells that way
Not only is this tripe absurd and an insult to the families of every Union veteran, but Forbes KNEW to publish it NOW, which only underscores the fundamental ANTI-Americanism of so many in the “conservative” movement. (There’s a pretty good discussion of the article here.)
I wish I could seem more jocund, more forgiving of this historical trash fiction, but, were the editor who approved this garbage present in this room, I’d kick him in the balls as hard as I could.
The blood-stained flag of treason
Although they opposed permanent tariffs, political expedience in spite of sound economics prompted the Founding Fathers to pass the first U.S. tariff act. For 72 years, Northern special interest groups used these protective tariffs to exploit the South for their own benefit. Finally in 1861, the oppression of those import duties started the Civil War….
The Undead South
Although popular movies emphasize slavery as a cause of the Civil War, the war best fits a psycho-historical model of the South rebelling against Northern exploitation….
The Rebel Zombie wants to eat your brains
Slavery was actually on the wane. Slaves visiting England were free according to the courts in 1569. France, Russia, Spain and Portugal had outlawed slavery. Slavery had been abolished everywhere in the British Empire 27 years earlier thanks to William Wilberforce. In the United States, the transport of slaves had been outlawed 53 years earlier by Thomas Jefferson in the Act Prohibiting the Importation of Slaves (1807) and the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act in England (1807). Slavery was a dying and repugnant institution.
The rewritten history of the Civil War began with Lincoln as a brilliant political tactic to rally public opinion. The issue of slavery provided sentimental leverage, whereas oppressing the South with hurtful tariffs did not. Outrage against the greater evil of slavery served to mask the economic harm the North was doing to the South. The situation in the South could be likened to having a legitimate legal case but losing the support of the jury when testimony concerning the defendant’s moral failings was admitted into the court proceedings.
Uh, BULLSHIT! Historian Dr. Mark Cheatham notes in response:
According to the 1860 U.S. Census, slavery was on the rise and had been for a number of decades.
Slave population of the North in 1790: 40,086; in 1860: 64
Slave population of the South in 1790: 657,538; in 1860: 3,953,696
According to Steve Deyle, slave property ranked only behind real estate in total value of U.S. wealth and expenditures in 1860*:
Assessed value of real estate: $6,973,106,049
Capital invested in manufacturing: $1,050,000,000
Cotton crop: $247,027,496
Federal gov’t. expenditures: $63,131,000
Funny how the month always features crap like this that ISN’T history at all
I don’t need to go through the rest of the ahistorical Lost Cause bullshit. It’s well established, and I’ve covered the Neoconfederate cause and their slimy tentacles at length.
This “economics” writer is obsessed with his little Dismal Science belief that tariffs are always bad, and he’s gonna prove how bad they are, no matter what persiflage and falsehood he can dredge up to justify it.
BUT … First of all, why believe anything else he’s ever written or will write?
Secondly, HOW can FORBES claim to be a serious magazine when they publish utter garbage like this?
Not only should the writer be fired IMMEDIATELY, but the editor who approved this column needs to be shown the door, else FORBES is merely an agit-prop rag, unworthy of serious consideration by any reader, let alone someone who’s planning on investing their hard-earned money based on the advice of lunatics like this.
So, it was about tariffs? Yeah.
Unlike politics, finance requires facts, and FORBES has egregiously shown us that they are no friend of facts and, in fact, the enabler of monstrous lies. Sound “over the top”? Really?
In a country where Paula Deen can be ostracised culturally and economically for saying the “N-word” out of any of our earshot, HOW can this pass? How is it that this Lost Cause apologist can dismiss the “slavery” explanation of the Civil War in the pages of FORBES and NOT pay a price? Are we that shallow?
Or just haven’t noticed? We NEED to notice this.
Die-hard tariff protesters?
This is the equivalent of his sticking his fat head out the door and screaming the N-word for hours, WITH the approval of his editor.
Guess the South rose again … but slightly different than the first time
Talk about your screwed-up priorities.
I might point out that you have to search all of the Southern Secession documents and debates to find ANY mention of tariffs whatsoever, and by comparison to the straight-up statements that secession is BECAUSE they feel the 1860 election threatens slavery.
But the author is a von Mises/Hayek/libertarian true believer, facts don’t matter, and only his Flat-Earth ideology does.
So what’s NEXT from Forbes’ magazine?
Which probably makes sense in a Steve Forbes-run organization.
But as far as being a serious publication?
Try fortune cookies.
At least they don’t have an insane agenda, and don’t buttress their insane agenda with phony non-facts that have been debunked for a century and more.
What Mr. Lost Cause writes (with the hilarious projection “The rewritten history of the Civil War began …”) is straight up Neoconfederate hogwash, intended to drop a turd in the punchbowl of the 150th Anniversary of Gettysburg and Vicksburg.
Gearing up for the next election with more phony “facts”?
If Mr. Forbes wants to be taken seriously journalistically, he will fire the columnist AND the editor who approved this.
Paula Deen expects no less.