Time for Every Southerner to Speak

Every year there comes a time for every right thinking southerner to express either in passing or in public a central truth about our history. The Civil War, begun in South Carolina, was a war only incidentally about states rights and instead particularly about Slavery. (I capitalize Slavery because the particular institution as it developed in the United States was a particular type of slavery and while all slavery is evil it can be said that the kind that developed in North America was a special brand of evil) The Civil War was not about States Rights. If it was then the South would not have been so enamored previously of the Fugitive Slave Act, an imposition of federal law on other states whose laws were abrogated by southern legislators desire to make sure that the rights of slave holders where paramount over every other right.

Those that claim innocently that federalism and devolution of power to the states is the best and right way to run a government may at times be excused for their ignorance. But ignorance is only a partial excuse and more often is a willful blindness. The fact is that States Rights is the rallying cry of the elite who wish a smaller playing field and fewer combatants on the political stage. Across the country there are too many groups and interests for one states elite to bend everything to their will. Once you've bought a state legislature it seems a waste to have to try and buy the national one. Most of the time that takes far too much money. So instead you wax rhapsodic about the wonders of Spanish moss and happiness when the federal government didn't do much. That anyone with knowledge of Spanish moss knows that its full of bugs and shouldn't be played with too much is an afterthought. With distance comes myth and a smoothing over of the cracks and crimes.

There are few with the courage anymore to truly defend slavery. Oh they'll elide and obfuscate around the crime and say that slaves where happy with their lot or that many slaves fought for the confederacy, which even if true begs the question of how a slave can fight for or against anything in that context. The entire culture of the South, its class divisions, its violence, its misogyny, was built on slavery. It was built on the backs of men and women who the ruling class decided where not worthy of a voice even to lament their lot. When one did, safe from the whips and chains and hangman's rope, oh boy did they scream. Forget any notion of rights, forget any notion of right, forget any notion of the proper place of federal government, it was time to protect that particular institution. The only right in the south that was respected was the right to own slaves. There was no right to free speech. There was no right to bear arms. There was no right to a jury trial. There was no right that couldn't be superseded by the immediate need to make sure that the rich had their property safe and neutered.

That is the truth of slavery in the south.


A question

Why is it that the fed can't create a 0 interest bond to banks that requires them to place in every account 1000 dollars. This would be stimulus. The bond would be paid back at 1 cent a day. If the particular account did not have that cent then the bank would have to pay that cent without crediting the particular account.


Citizens United. Money=Speech

Will Wilkinson tries to give what is to his mind a charitable reading of why progressives or liberals have a problem with the Citizen's United Case.

I say tries because like most people who attempt to conceive of why someone else might think the way they do he believes that they must think in someway the same way he does. So be begins with a conception of state power and its limits as the first principle. Most people do not work from first principles.

Most people in my view, and that includes myself and anyone who claims to speak from first principles, is a mishmash of barely held together biases and prejudices that fight one another at every moment. In a partial sense I agree with Hobbes when he says, "In deliberation, the last appetitie or aversion immediately adhering to the action, or to the omisson thereof, is what we call the Will, the act (not the faculty of willing)".

That is we are only sometimes reasoning creatures. So for liberals the problem is two fold. The first is the sense that corporations, thought of only as money making corporations, have more power and more influence than the people. The people, if a political party has won a majority, who have the actual governing right. A government being in existence by the consent of the people who are not corporations.

If I am a person a corporation is not a person because he is not like me would be one way of putting it. (If all of this seems confused and jumping around it is because I believe that the reasons themselves, if they are called reasons, jump around. Also I believe that libertarians are just as subject to this and the supposed logic from principles that most libertarians will reason from is itself is merely barely contained prejudice and passion) Think of reasons for this. I cannot poison an area and claim a monetary justification and be merely fined for killing people. I'd be put in jail, the news reports would give me a snappy name and the trial would be everywhere, if enough people died or got sick. Even if through negligence I kill someone, time in prison not a fine would be the probable outcome. I then am more liable for my actions than a corporation.

So then to speech. If a corporation is not treated as a person in respect to their responsibilities then how could they have the same rights? Now some might say, as one commenter at Wilkinson's does that how could a group of individuals somehow lose their rights when they incorporate that they had when they were individual. The reason, if they are given privileges over and above in respect to liability for their group actions then they must conversely lose certain rights as a group.

Now I as an individual am slightly more sanguine about the ruling than many others. For the federal government I don't think that it will have much effect. For state governments, well most of them are already captured by corporate power. We will see what the effect is.