See what I did there?
Like most Baby Boomers raised in American public schools, I believed what I was told – that Washington was The Father of Our Country and Lincoln Preserved the Union and freed the slaves.
I still believe Washington was mostly good – the Whiskey Rebellion aside, but Lincoln is much more complicated.
An early statist and progressive?
Setting the stage for T.R. and Woodrow Wilson. And then F.D.R., Clinton and Obama.
Just as the Fabian socialists wanted…
(From Brock Townsend)
Lincoln, Lenin and Stalin: Communist Party USA meeting in Chicago, 1939
The full power of the War Department was utilized to secure Lincoln’s reelection in November 1864, according to Assistant Secretary of War Charles A. Dana. In early 1863 he was sent to spy on Grant to determine his acceptance of Radical ideals and thus suitable for higher command; it was Dana who ordered Jefferson Davis manacled in Fortress Monroe. As a young man Dana experimented with utopian fantasies at the infamous Brook Farm commune at West Roxbury, Massachusetts.
Bernhard Thuersam, http://www.Circa1865.com The Great American Political Divide
The Seeds of American Communism
“. . . [O]ne notable European communist of 1848 who was a member of the Union Army was Maj. Robert Rosa [who was] an early member of the New York Communist Club. The following preamble of the [Club’s] constitution gives insights into the worldview of these early American communists:
“The members of Communist Club reject every religious belief, no matter in what guise it may appear . . . [and] recognize the perfect equality of all men, regardless of color and sex, and therefore they strive above all to abolish private property, inherited or accumulated . . . “
These early American socialists/communists did indeed reject accepted orthodox religion, but they maintained a near “religious” faith in their utopian dreams.
The very foundation of modern-day liberalism/socialism was laid by the many and various utopian ideologues of the nineteenth century. The fact that these utopian socialists/communists found Abraham Lincoln and the Republican Party to be objects worthy of their zeal and efforts speaks volumes as to why post-Appomattox America has adopted most if not all of the early American socialist/communist goals.
Universal suffrage was a dream of every socialist/communist movement in Europe and America; even Karl Marx spoke in favor of universal suffrage; the same can be said to be true about a progressive income tax, abolition of the rights of inheritance, a system of national education, centralized banking, and many other socialist/communist measures.
Socialism and communism did not come to these United States from Russia; these concepts were already well-known by many Northern intellectuals of the nineteenth century. The preponderance of communistic societies of the United States were located in Northern States before the war. According to Theodore Draper [author of Roots of American Communism] by 1923 most communists in America could be found in cities such as New York, Chicago, Boston, Minneapolis, Cleveland and Detroit. Note that we do not find Charleston, New Orleans or any other Southern city mentioned in the above listed cities.
The thought of Lincoln as the first American president to have had a communist sympathizer working in a key part of his administration is and should be shocking to all Americans. Charles Dana, who visited Karl Marx in 1848, was an associate of Horace Greeley and an early convert to the communistic Fourier movement. Dana served as assistant secretary of war under Edwin Stanton during the Lincoln administration, thus becoming the first communist, or at least the first communist sympathizer, to serve in high position within the government of the United States.
Be that as it may, the result of Lincoln’s victory over the South was to give the utopian dreamers a victory for big government. As a result, all Americans today are living in a nation far removed from that envisioned by the founding fathers. At this juncture there is one question that stands begging to be asked: “Can the adverse effects of the socialists’ victory at Appomattox be removed from this nation?”
(Red Republicans and Lincoln’s Marxists, Walter Kennedy & Al Benson, Jr., iUniverse, Inc., 2007, pp. 24-26)