Lincoln, the Quintessential Politician

People ask me how much truth is in my books, and I have to admit that I base a lot of my story on little known facts (or those that once were little known). Truth is not only stranger than fiction at times, it’s often more compelling. Yesterday I posted a bloggery about the history and myths of the American Civil War that were included in my new novel Light Bringer, and today I’m posting some of the data supporting the claim that the civil war was about preserving the Union at all costs.

In his inaugural address, Lincoln said, “Apprehension seems to exist among the people of the Southern States that by the accesson of a Republican administration thier property and their peace and personal security are to to be endangered. I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the states where it now exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.”

in 1861, after the war began, Lincoln said, “My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and it is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the union without freeing any slave, I would do it.”

In a debate with Senator Stephen Douglas, Lincoln said, “I am not nor every have been in favor of bringing about the social and political equality of the white and black races. I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or or jurors of Negroes.”

G. Edward Griffin, in The Creature from Jekyll Island, wrote: “When conscription was initiated by Lincoln in 1863, people in the north were outraged. They protested. Federal troops eventually had to be called in to put down anti-draft riots in Ohio and Illinois. In New York City, mobs stormed the draft offices and set fire to the buildings. The riots continued for four days and were suppressed only when the Federal Army of the Potomac was ordered to fire into crowds. Over a thousand civilians were killed or wounded. They also imprisoned protesters without formal charges or trial. Thus, under the banner of opposing slavery, American citizens of the north not only were killed on the streets of their own cities, they were forced into military combat against their will and thrown into prison without due process of law. In other words, free men were enslaved so that slave could be made free. Even if the pretended crusade (against slavery) had been genuine, it was a bad exchange.”

Bruce Catton wrote: “Technically, the Emancipation Proclamation was absurd. It proclaimed freedom for all slaves in precisely those areas where the United States could not make its authority effective, and allowed slavery to continue in slave states under Federal control.” It was strategy, pure and simple, and doomed the South to defeat, because no European government could takes sides against a country that was trying to destroy slavery.

In 1921, Otto Bismark, Chancellor of Germany, admitted: “The division of the United States into federations of equal force was decided long before the Civil War by the high financial powers of Europe. The bankers were afraid that the United States, if it remained in one block and as one nation, would attain economic and financial independence, which would upset their financial domination over Europe and the world. Of course, the ‘inner circle’ of finance, the voice of the Rothschilds prevailed. They saw an opportunity for prodigious booty if they could substitute two feeble democracies, burdened with debt to the financiers, inplace of a vigorous republic sufficient unto herself. Therefore, they sent their emissaries into the field to exploit the question of slavery and to drive a wedge between the two parts of the union. The rupture between the North and South became inevitable; the masters of European finance employed all their forces to bring it about and turn it to their advantage.”

The South lost, but so did the North. We no longer own our dollars — world financial institutions own us . . . oops. I mean our money.

Myth and History of The American Civil War

Light Bringer is being touted as science fiction, and I am exploiting that by guest blogging at a science fiction blog, Grasping for the Wind, but the truth is, my new novel is just as much history (or alternate history, if you believe what you were taught) as it is science fiction.

Light Bringer includes a couple of scenes where a group of conspiracy theorists argue about who is really orchestrating world events, who the secret leader(s) is/are, and how far back that secret leadership extends. The story hints that this so-called conspiracy can be traced to our very roots as humans. If one follows the trail of secrecy to ancient history, especially the history we call myth, this “leadership” takes on the appearance of science fiction. But is Light Bringer science? Or myth? Or history?

Midst my characters who might or might not be fully human, midst all the technological talk of UFOs and IFO (identified flying objects), midst talk of additional planets in our solar system and of the origins of human life, are passages of history, such as this excerpt culled from a meeting of my conspiracy buffs:

“Emery,” Rena said, “what did Scott mean earlier about the truth setting you free?”

Brian, Faye, and Scott groaned.

Rena frowned. “What? What did I say?”

Brian smiled at her, as he had been doing most of the evening. “Nothing. It’s just that any mention of it sets Emery off, and we’ve heard the lecture a thousand times.”

“I don’t lecture,” Emery said loftily.

Hoots of laughter greeted the remark.

Rena turned to Philip. “Do you know what Scott meant about the truth setting Emery free?”

Philip nodded. “He used to be an American History professor, but they fired him for teaching the whole truth instead of sticking to the text book.”

“I don’t get it. Isn’t history about truth?”

Realizing that all eyes were focused on him, Philip squirmed in his seat. “It should be, but it isn’t. For example, Emery taught that states’ rights was the main issue of the Civil War, and that’s frowned on in today’s political climate.”

Fatigue etched Emery’s face. “They accused me of being a racist because I said Lincoln used slavery as a tool to get people to fight an unpopular war, and they called me a conspiracy theorist because I taught that the war extended beyond our borders—part of a world-wide pattern.

“Modern education consists of subject matter broken into small and separate units of study to keep the students from seeing the big picture, and I didn’t agree with that. The sweep of history can only be seen if you’re looking at the big picture.

“In a single decade, 1861 to 1871, the serfs were emancipated in Russia, Italy was unified, Canada was unified, the German Empire was proclaimed, the Austria-Hungary Dual Monarchy was established, Thailand was reorganized, the Meiji Restoration in Japan gave power to a western oligarchy, and Das Kapital, a philosophy for the New World Order, was published. Global movements of such magnitude do not rise independently of one another. Someone, or a group of someones, rebuilt Europe along with large chunks of the rest of the world.

“Against this panorama of history, you can see the truth about the American Civil War. It was all about states’ rights. Were we to remain a federation of powerful independent states loosely unified by a weak federal government as was originally intended, or were we to become a nation of weak states dependant on and subservient to a strong central government that could be more easily controlled by the international power elite?

“The irony is that by doing whatever necessary to keep the states unified, Lincoln managed to destroy the very nation he tried to preserve.”

The above is a simplistic explantion, of course, since a discussion about legal plunder didn’t really fit in this novel. According to G. Edward Griffin in The Creature from Jekyll Island, Northern politicians had passed protective legislation putting import duties on industrial products, forcing the south to buy from the north at higher prices than they were paying to their European sources. Europe retaliated by curtailing the purchase of American cotten. That hurt the south even more, and they wanted out. Moreover, a divided USA would be susceptible to European expansion. Says Griffin, “The issue of slavery was but a ploy. America had become the target in a ruthless game of world economics and politics.”

Myth? Or history? Does it matter? You already know what you think, and what I think doesn’t make a bit of difference.

On the Eve of Publication…

After seeing my article, “A Book Reviewer’s Lexicon,” where I mentioned that I’d read 20,000 books, author Ken Coffman asked what books stuck out in my mind as premier ones, what authors consistently pleased me, and which books I’ve read more than once. Off the top of my head, I posted a list of books. Premier? I don’t know that they are, but for some reason, I remember the title and author years — sometimes decades — after finishing them:

Sakkara by Noel Barber
Sarum by Edward Rutherford
The River God by Wilbur Smith
The Left Hand of God by William Barrett
The Balance Wheel by Taylor Caldwell (for many reasons, both good and bad)
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens (because of the irony)
The Creature From Jekyll Island by G. Edward Griffin (non-fiction)
The Gods of Eden by William Bramley (non-fiction)
The Twelfth Planet by Zeccharia Sitchen (non-fiction)
Story by Robert McKee (non-fiction)
most books written by Antony Sutton (non-fiction)
most books written by Stephen J. Gould (non-fiction)
a few books written by Hank Messick (non-fiction)

I wouldn’t necessarily recommend any of these books. I read them so long ago, I was a different person. That I remembered titles and authors shows what an impact they had at the time. In recent years, the only book that had any impact on me was Duma Key by Stephen King. I’m ashamed to admit it, but he did get me with that one. During the past couple of decades, the only other books that have completely pulled me in are The River God and Sarum, both of which I intend to reread. The River God is a story based on scrolls found in an Egyptian tomb, and Sarum is a Michener-type book about the Salisbury Plain in England. I don’t agree with a lot of Rutherford’s history, but the book fascinated me. I want to reread Sakkara if I can ever get it again, though I don’t remember much about it except that it’s a sort of North African Gone With the Wind. (Interestingly, I don’t like Gone With the Wind, though I did when I was very young. I tried rereading it a while back, and got bored.) I did reread Tanamera, (also by Noel Barber, and a sort of Singapore Gone With the Wind) and liked it the second time, too. In fact, I will reread all of Noel Barber’s books some day. Maybe even some of Nevil Shute’s books. And David Westheimer’s.

I read The Balance Wheel during the Vietnam era. Now THAT made an impact — reading a book about the war-to-end-all-wars during a later war. If I ever come across a copy of the book, I’ll reread it. (I lent it to someone who promised — actually swore — that she’d return it but never did.)

One book that got left off the above list is The Killing Gift by Bari Wood. I read it many years ago, and always remembered it. Reread it a few years ago, and it still had the same impact. It’s one of the few I’ve kept to re-reread.

I’ve also kept a copy of The Proteus Operation by James P. Hogan, so I can reread it someday.

One author who consistently pleased me was Kate Wilhelm until she stopped writing science fiction. On my wish list would be a newly written Kate Wilhelm science fiction novel (Are you listening, Kate?), but so far she’s sticking with mysteries. (They’re mostly published by Mira, which seems like hiding a diamond in the mud.)

Interestingly, I started rereading some of the classics, and couldn’t do it. Nicholas Nickleby, Sense and Sensibilty, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. AAGGHH!!!

For about fifteen years I got so sick of the pap put out by the major publishers that I stuck with non-fiction. Read everything — history, quantum mechanics, string theory, health, archeology, etc, etc, but that got old (or I did) so now I’m back to fiction.

I’ve decided I need to get rich so I can start buying indie books. I feel like the man who kept shrinking and shrinking until finally he shrunk so much he ended up in an entirely different universe, a microscopic one. For me, the publishing world has shrunk so much that the only hope for finding the sort of books that interests me is to find another world. Which I have. The indie world. I guess I’ll just have to get people to send me books to “review.” Yes, that’s it. I’ll tell people I’ll do a review if they send me their book.

I thought that it would bother me posting this for anyone to see — it does say something about me, though I don’t know what — and I half-intended to delete it, but then it dawned on me: this is the eve of my becoming a published author. I’ve approved the proofs, so More Deaths Than One and A Spark of Heavenly Fire will soon show up on Amazon. (They are already listed on the Second Wind Publishing site.) If a list of books I’ve read exposes me, then the books I’ve written will expose me even more.

So, here I am.

For what it’s worth.

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