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Last night, Jon Stewart invited Fox News's Judge Andrew Napolitano on the show after ripping him a new one with Larry Wilmore over his revisionist history about Abraham Lincoln and slavery. After interviewing him and not really getting anywhere with him, Jon then treated it like a game show, with three history professors there as the judges to call out Napolitano's revisionist bullshit history. Jon's a comedian, after all, not a historian. So he got actual history professors to bolster his case, and punch holes in Fox's libertarian mouthpiece.

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: The President used federal marshals to chase down slaves that had escaped and returned them to the South during the Civil War!

ALL THREE PROFESSORS: That's not true!

(massive audience cheering and applause)

Video and full transcript below the fold.

JON STEWART: So we just discussed the history of slavery with my friend there, Judge Andrew Napolitano — and I mean friend, I do love this man, he's a warm-hearted and good man.  And so, we're going to do it now on a game show we just invented, called Weakest Lincoln.  You've already met our first contestant, Judge Andrew Napolitano.  Why don't we right now meet his opponent?  He is, objectively, America's greatest President.  Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Abraham Lincoln.  Abraham Lincoln!

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: Wow!  What's up, everybody?

JON STEWART: We have an esteemed panel of judges.  From the City University of New York, Distinguished Professor Jim Oakes.  From UMass Amherst, Manisha Sinha, Professor of Afro-American Studies.  And also we have, from... what is the college that you're from?

ERIC FONER: Columbia University.

JON STEWART: Columbia University, DeWitt Clinton Professor of History, Mr. Eric Foner!  We're going to get right to our first question.  Why did Abraham Lincoln start the Civil War?  (Napolitano buzzes in)  Yes, Judge Napolitano.

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: Because he wanted to preserve the Union, because he needed the tariffs from the southern states, because he resented the challenge to his authority.

JON STEWART: Abraham Lincoln, yes.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: Yeah, well, they shot first, and you don't mess with Lincoln.  All the vampires know what I'm talking about.

JON STEWART: Panel?  Professor Oakes?  Why did Lincoln start the Civil War?

JIM OAKES: Because they shot first, and you don't mess with Lincoln.

JON STEWART: Here we go.  Now we touched on this earlier too.  This is an interesting question.  If Lincoln wanted to purchase and free every slave in the United States, how much would that have cost?  How much?  Mr. President, let's go with Lincoln.  Lincoln, how much would it have cost?

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: Well, it would have cost $3 billion dollars, and keep in mind, I only carry $5 dollar bills.

JON STEWART: Your answer?  Now there were about, what, 4 million slaves?  Judge, you got an answer?

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: Look, the numbers are equivocal because you're trying to talk about it in modern terms.  But in 1860 terms, I'll agree with the number $3 billion dollars.  Less than half of what it cost to fight the Civil War and rebuild the South.

JON STEWART: Professor Foner, what's the bill for freeing everybody?

ERIC FONER: The $3 billion is correct...

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: Thank you, professor.

ERIC FONER: ... but it should be noted that if you wanted to buy all the factories, railroads, and banks in the country at that time, it would have only cost you $2.5 billion.  In other words, the slaves were by far the largest concentration of property in the country.  They didn't have the money to buy up $3 billion dollars worth of slaves.  And more to the point, the South was not willing to sell their slaves.

JON STEWART: So slavery was still economically viable for the South at that time.

ERIC FONER: Slavery was not only viable, it was growing.  There were more slaves in the United States in 1860 than there ever had been before.  This idea that it was dying out, it was going to die out, is ridiculous.  It was thriving and growing....

JON STEWART: Now, let's....  When he says "ridiculous", what he means is "good answer, see me after class".  Question three: If the goal was to avoid devastating consequences, how does slavery stack up to the Civil War?  Lincoln.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: 500,000 people.  Let's see... carry the four score and 7... you know what, I'm not exactly a numbers person.

JON STEWART: I understand.  Judge?

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: Somewhere between 785,000 and 800,000 human beings died because of Lincoln's war.  That's more Americans than all war put together.

JON STEWART: And how many slaves?

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: You know, I don't know the answer on how many slaves.  That was not in one of the questions you gave me ahead of time.

(everybody cracks up)

JON STEWART: You were supposed to pretend we were all smart, Judge!  You were not supposed to tell them that we had the answers beforehand!

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: Not the answers, just the questions!

JON STEWART: Professor Sinha, what is the historical fact?

MANISHA SINHA: Nearly 12 million Africans were forcibly removed to the Americas in the African slave trade.  By the most conservative estimates of the mortality rate, 10 to 20%.  2 to 5 million may have perished.

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: Are we talking about during the Civil War, or during the slave trade?

JON STEWART: Well, I think we were doing the cost-benefit analysis of the Civil War, versus the damage.

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: But the slave trade ended in 1808, forty years before the Civil War.


MANISHA SINHA: But it existed for four centuries before that.


JON STEWART: And the slave trade also, while it ended officially, they still did that.  In fact, England used to patrol the seas, and they would capture 200,000, 300,000 slaves every year.  Please tell me that's true.


MANISHA SINHA: Yes, absolutely.

JON STEWART: So even though they abandoned it, people were still using people as property, and isn't that what the war was about?

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: The President used, forgive me, Abe...

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: That's fine, that's fine.

ANDREW NAPOLITANO: ... the President used federal marshals to chase down slaves that had escaped and returned them to the South during the Civil War!

ALL THREE PROFESSORS: That's not true!

(massive audience cheering and applause)

Ladies and gentlemen, that's all the time we have for The Weakest Lincoln!  We'll be right back.

BTW, here is the extended interview and game show.
Jon also looked at the situation in Crimea, and tried to uncover just what makes Putin tick.
Meanwhile, Stephen looked at the pope's new magazine, and Huffington Post's obsession with college students engaging in more anal sex with their youth trend expert Randy Ferrar.
He then had another Tip/Wag segment involving the NSA and the SAT.
Stephen talked with new MSNBC host Ronan Farrow.

Originally posted to BruinKid on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Electronic America: Progressives Film, music & Arts Group and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  thanks for highlighting this (12+ / 0-)

    sounds like an educational hoot.

    An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

    by mightymouse on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:20:23 AM PDT

  •  Stewart did a terrible job (17+ / 0-)

    Napolitano claim was that Lincoln should have let slavery alone.

    That was Lincoln's position in 1858 and in 1860.

    No one said that.

    Napolitano said the issue was about tariffs.  Really? Why was Kansas bleeding?

    [Medicare, and Medicaid, and Social Security] do not make us a nation of takers; they free us to take the risks that make this country great.

    by MoDem on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:22:12 AM PDT

    •  Pretty much. "The Lost Cause" mythology of (38+ / 0-)

      the Civil War, wherein Lincoln was an unreasonable tyrant, the South forced / tricked into firing first, and all the slaves were happy and slavery besides the point is as old as the last days of the Civil War itself. And it basically exists today for the same purposes it exists today, to justify and perpetuate the attitudes of the Antebellum South towards government, democracy and race.

      •  The Power Of That Myth Is Remarkable In Light Of (64+ / 0-)

        the basic chronology. The rebels had already seceded, formed a rebel government, and plotted violence before Lincoln was even inaugurated.

        November 6, 1860 - Abraham Lincoln is duly elected President of the United States.

        December 20, 1860- South Carolina secedes from the Union.

        January 1861 - Six more Slave States secede from the Union.

        February 8-9, 1861 - The rebel Slave States create the "Confederate States of America" in Montgomery, AL.

        February 18, 1861 - The rebel Jefferson Davis is appointed the 1st President of the "Confederate States of America."

        March 4, 1861 - Abraham Lincoln is inaugurated as the 16th president of the United States in Washington, DC.

        April 12, 1861 - Southern rebels fire on the federal garrison at Fort Sumter, South Carolina.

        The timeline makes it quite clear that claims that the uninaugurated Lincoln's "tyranny" started the Slave States' rebellion is utterly ridiculous.

        •  Yes, but then you'll recall that Obama (30+ / 0-)

          was held responsible for the 2008 crash.
          What do we take away from this? That some people are time-challenged. They do not know what time it is and they cannot keep the sequence of events straight. Some exist in an ineffable present where all events are concurrent.  It is not possible to argue with someone whose sense of sequence is off because they do not 'get' the temporal relationship of cause and effect.
          The linear concept of time is not universally recognized. We know it is real because it allows us to designate a place where we want to be in the future and then actually get there.

          by hannah on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 08:01:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, the consistancy between then and now is... (4+ / 0-)

          that people from the same regions have a different definition of what the word, tyranny, means when compared to the common official definition and understanding.

        •  And the civil war had nothing to do (14+ / 0-)

          with slavery. Even though the confederate constitution says (Article 1, Sec.9, 4) "No bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law denying or impairing the right of property in negro slaves shall be passed."

          and (Article IV)
          "Sec. 2. (I) The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in the several States; and shall have the right of transit and sojourn in any State of this Confederacy, with their slaves and other property; and the right of property in said slaves shall not be thereby impaired.

          (3) No slave or other person held to service or labor in any State or Territory of the Confederate States, under the laws thereof, escaping or lawfully carried into another, shall, in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor; but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such slave belongs,. or to whom such service or labor may be due.

          Sec. 3.
          (3) The Confederate States may acquire new territory; and Congress shall have power to legislate and provide governments for the inhabitants of all territory belonging to the Confederate States, lying without the limits of the several Sates; and may permit them, at such times, and in such manner as it may by law provide, to form States to be admitted into the Confederacy. In all such territory the institution of negro slavery, as it now exists in the Confederate States, shall be recognized and protected be Congress and by the Territorial government; and the inhabitants of the several Confederate States and Territories shall have the right to take to such Territory any slaves lawfully held by them in any of the States or Territories of the Confederate States."

          "Labor was the first price, the original purchase - money that was paid for all things" -- Adam Smith

          by HugoDog on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:26:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The New York Times did a series of articles in (13+ / 0-)

            2010 and 2011 about this claim that the war wasn't about slavery.  The conclusion, after reviewing all the newspaper and magazine articles, state government legislative speeches, political speeches and other documents of the period, was that the war was very much about slavery, at least for the South.  All that revisionism and "lost cause" stuff is just an effort to run away from the fact that the South really was fighting a war to maintain the right to own other human beings.

            •  "About Slavery" (12+ / 0-)

              I think that there is room for nuance in that Lincoln was a political pragmatist. He was not a political advocate for abolition. The Republican position opposed its further spread, but did not advocate for its abolition. The Emancipation Proclomation itself declared "now, henceforth, and forever free" only slaves in states then in rebellion against the government. So its real practical effect was nothing. I was a symbolic act.

              The South seceded to preserve slavery. You can dress it up however you want. Slaves were the vast majority of capital in the South and, as I believe Eric Foner (one of the greatest historians of this period, bar none, his book "Reconstruction" is the definitive work on that subject) said in this show, the capital in slaves was greater than that in banks and railroads combined, which is staggering.

              Southern slaveholders, I am sure, saw this as "states rights" and "property" issue, but the rights in question were specifically the right to retain property in human beings, and to keep their slaves. It wasn't about eminent domain, taxes, or court jurisdiction.

              The war didn't start out being about ending slavery. But it was all about the expansion of slavery into new territory, and about southern fears of abolition and a realpolitical calculation that future electoral politics were arrayed against the persistence of slavery.

              Some of the stuff you were taught in high school was actually right. There is a sense in which slavery was "dying a natural death" when it was primarily about rice and sugar cane. But the Cotton Gin really was the thing that made slave labor on cotton plantations into big money and big business. "King Cotton" wasn't a NORTHERN expression.

              This was a wealth versus liberty issue, through and through. And the invisible hand of the market was driving a massive EXPANSION of slavery at the time the war erupted. All driven by the big new market in cotton, which was all driven by the way the gin lowered the cost of cloth made from it.

              I actually have considerable respect for the power of money and markets, but slavery is a damned good example of what Michael Sandel means when he talks about "The Moral Limits of Markets."

              •  Replying to myself... (4+ / 0-)

                I want to emphasize one point. Napolitano (spelling?) consistently conflated slavery and the international slave trade. He talked about all the countries that had banned the international slave trade. That was true. But the Confederate Constitution also banned the international slave trade! There is a big difference between carribean sugar plantation slavery and Southern cotton slavery. Not least that the mortality rate on the sugar plantations had been so high thaat they couldn't maintain sotcks of slaves: They died faster than they could breed. So that economy depended on constant resupply of captured slaves. Again, agricultural slavery in the South in the United States was expanding, was economically viable, and did not require any international trading in slaves. The slave population was sustainable using only the children of existing slaves. Napolitano's arguments are a series of ahistorical straw men.

                •  Plantation owners were also speculators (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  fumie, thanatokephaloides

                  Recall six years ago how freaky homeowners got about the absurd idea that they could all become millionaires at the same time by ever-rising home prices.  The slaveowners stood to make a fortune by restricting the supply of new slaves on the Southern frontier to those born to their existing slaves.  They believed the bubble would keep on going.

              •  Lincoln detested slavery (3+ / 0-)

                He was no abolitionist in the vein of a Douglass, and certainly no John Brown; but he criticised the institution of slavery many times in his speeches and letters, and spoke frankly of his opposition to it. BUT Lincoln was above all the servant of the Law - this is how he regarded himself and justified his actions to the public, at least.   He did not believe the presient had the power to alter the institution and was skeptical that Congress itself could act against it without an Amendment. This may be political pragmatism or calculation, or it may - and is, in my own opinion, as one who has read a great many of his letters and speeches - it may be a true matter of principle for him.

                The south seceded to preserve slavery: thats true; there is no serious question of this among historians.  "states rights", liberty and the sanctity of property were the arguments they used because those were the only ones available in the customary political discourse that could possibly be used to justify the continutation of the institution - though not the institution itself, which was increasingly justifiable only through the invention of "race" and the notions of racwial hierarchy that became prevalent over the course of the nineteenth century.  

                •  No doubt! (0+ / 0-)

                  Oh, there is absolutely no doubt he opposed slavery. But his speeches and letters are filled with evidence of his awareness that the issue was complex.  From his famous letter to Horace Greely:

                  "I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored the nearer the Union will be "the Union as it was." If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time save Slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy Slavery, I do not agree with them. 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, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would also do that."

                  •  Another reply to myself... (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    solublefish, Brian1066

                    I too have read his collected speeches and writings. I would say that both his opposition to slavery AND his reluctance to be an abolitionist were both grounded in principle. The former in a moral abhorrence of slavery and in the whole free labor foundation of the new Republican Party, and the latter in profund respect for the law and the Constitution. I did not mean to suggest in calling him a pragmatist that anything about his position on slavery came merely from political ambition or pure power politics. I think Lincoln was one of the most principled men I have ever studied in history. He was in almost every way a remarkable person, and almost incredible embodiment of the promise and possibility of this country's ideals. He literally came from nothing to being justifiably praised as our greatest president.

                    But as Doris Kearns Goodwin's "Team of Rivals" shows aswell as any other book I've read about Lincoln, he was a very smart and skilled practical politician. He understood the law, he understood human motivations, and he could see well how the two interact. He knew what he could accomplish and what he could not.

                    The best choice the recent Speilberg film made was to focus so narrowly on the passage of the first reconstruction amendment (the 13th). By so doing they managed to avoid the trap of a seeming "superhuman" president and were able to show better than any previous attempt (except maybe "Abe Lincoln in Illinois") a realistic image of the man and the things about the man that made him so suited to the time and purpose.

                    My wife is the person who introduced me to Eric Foner's book "Reconstruction" which I would urge everyone to read. The Civil War is read and written about so much as an almost "stand alone" event, and it is in itself a worthwhile study, but the war's true importance lies in wider American story and how it fits in to the story of our founding, through Reconstruction, through Jim Crow, and through the civil rights struggle of the 1960's is more interesting and important than the thing in isolation.

                    I genuinely love my country. Conservatives try to claim ownership of patriotism. But the America they worship doesn't and has never existed. I think the love I feel when I contemplate my country, a county that is always struggling to live up to, to become the idea its founder's had, is both more real, more true, and more worthy of love and fidelity than the delusional perfect country the Right seems to believe in. To me, the American Revolution never ends...

          •  I wouldn't go that far... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            thanatokephaloides, majcmb1

            Lincoln may not have wanted to rush to free slaves, so it may not have been about "freeing the slaves", but the South certainly was acting in it's own self interest and that self interest was all about "keeping the slaves".

            So yeah, it had everything to do with Slavery.

            "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." (Edmund Burke)

            by resa on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 08:26:25 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Also, Lincoln repeatedly tried (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          thanatokephaloides, majcmb1

          to negotiate compensated emancipation with the border states.  They told him to go fuck himself.

          "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

          by Subterranean on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:04:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Boy did he softball it (8+ / 0-)

      He should have made Napolitano look like a piece of cheese and he buddy-buddied it instead. Spent more time on what good friends they are than on the stupidity of his "argument."

      Happy just to be alive

      by exlrrp on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:57:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Actually... (0+ / 0-)

      Jon did say that it was NOT about tariffs, he twice pointed out that the Judge was completely wrong about Lincoln's position on the states - I thought he did a great job - especially since he was dealing with someone he obviously likes and admires.

      It is hard to watch people behave so badly as the Judge did last night.

      Don't meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.

      by Whitewitch on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 02:15:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  is the video here? somehow I can't see it. (8+ / 0-)

    An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

    by mightymouse on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:34:21 AM PDT

  •  weakest lincoln! (10+ / 0-)

    comics are always the smartest guys in the room.

    Shame cannot survive being spoken. It cannot survive empathy. -Dr. Brene Brown

    by thankgodforairamerica on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:42:53 AM PDT

  •  Napolitano is an idiot, always has been, so? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gffish, MoDem, Subterranean, slinkie

    Since they have trashed the very concept of SCIENCE for the Fox viewer, they have now set their sights on HISTORY to befuddle.

    Who will be left to even dispute any of it, as the Republican pieces of shit have undermined the public schools to the point no one will even have the education to know these idiots are full of shit.

    The fall of a society, rotting from within .... OR we can put Republicanism and Conservatism down like the rapid dog it is .... starting with FOX News and anyone who has ever been involved with it.

    I want to see Murdoch swinging from a lamp post in front of the US Capital building .... as a start.

  •  you have a missing link, Mr Lincoln (0+ / 0-)

    BTW, here is the extended interview and game show.

    that doesn't go anywhere.

  •  Is this true? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    "On December 20, the day South Carolina voted to secede from the Union, Lincoln told a major Republican party figure, Thurlow Weed, that he had no qualms about endorsing the Crittenden amendment if it would restrict slavery to the states where it was already established, and that Congress should recommend to the Northern states that they repeal their "personal liberty" laws that hampered the return of fugitive slaves. However, Lincoln said, he would not support any proposal to extend slavery into the western territories. The Crittenden Amendment failed.25"

    25. R. Current, The Lincoln Nobody Knows (1958), pp. 87-92.; Stephen Oates, With Malice Toward None (New York: 1977), pp. 199-200.

    •  Very likely. (19+ / 0-)

      Lincoln took quite a while to come around to even wanting to free the slaves.

      This segues into a point that is often (and intentionally) sidelined:

      The Civil War was about slavery, but not because Lincoln was elected on a policy of abolishing it. He wasn't.

      No, it was about slavery because the slave states were demanding new states be slave states, and demanding that non-slave states assist them in committing slavery. The war happened because the slave states threw a violent temper tantrum when everyone else wouldn't do what they demanded.

      "What could BPossibly go wrong??" -RLMiller "God is just pretend." - eru

      by nosleep4u on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 09:53:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  sooo, nothing's changed but the level of violence (6+ / 0-)

        or so it would seem.

        Last full month in which the average daily temperature did not exceed twentieth-century norms: 2/1985 - Harper's Index, 2/2013

        by kamarvt on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:17:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly. Basically, the South decided Lincoln's (8+ / 0-)

        election / remaining in the Union MIGHT lead to an end of slavery at some indeterminate point in the future and freaked. It wasn't the threat of immediate emancipation they were organizing against, despite their focuse on the "evils" of those few who were calling for immediate abolition. It was the faint specter of some distant gradual emancipation and/or compensated emancipation plan that might befall the South should she ever loose her grip on the Senate. After all, the British had already forced that "nightmare" upon their spiritual and intellectual brothers in the Caribbean. Avoiding the American version of the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833 was a top priority. Which is why the most ridiculous claim of all, beyond just the financial impracticality of buying all the salves, is the idea that the South would have allowed anyone with a spare 3 Billion dollars lying around to purchase them in the first place. Or a spare 30 billion for that matter.

        •  Dred Scott (4+ / 0-)

          Don't forget this decision which was rendered just before the election. It seemed to negate any law that restricted slavery to only some states.  The full implications of that statement that slaves are property would have driven the country to no longer be half slave and half free, but all slave.

        •  Not really a threat of abolition.... (4+ / 0-)

          ... at any time within the next 50 years -- but a near certainty of no more expansion of slavery.  Since the money to be made from producing slaves (assuming a free and growing marketplace for slaves) was greater than the amount of money to be made from using slaves to produce mere goods (agricultural and manufactured), this was a an insufferable strangling of the economic rights of the Southern aristocracy.

          •  They foresaw abolition (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            because if slavery wasn't expanded to the west, then as new states were admitted to the union, the balance of power would shift to free states.  Once the free states had large majorities in congress, the abolition of slavery would be a certainty.  

            It's no accident that the actual fighting began in Kansas over the question of whether the state would be admitted free, or slave.  That was long before the 1860 election, even before John Brown's brave but foolish stand at Harpers Ferry.

            "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

            by Subterranean on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:21:42 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  The stupidest thing Napolitano said all evening (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SilentBrook, tethys

              was that he would have assisted, even fought in, a slave rebellion. Such rebellions brought down well-armed state militias on them, as was the original intent of the Second Amendment. If a rebellion got beyond what the local militia could suppress, other state militias and even the US Army would have been called in.

              This is far beyond the level of idiocy at which Rand Paul claims that he would not have patronized a segregated business in the Jim Crow South.

              I noticed several Southern Dog Whistles in what he said, such as "Lincoln's War". He did not explicitly call it the War of Northern Aggression, but that was the narrative he was working from.

              Now if we can just get Stewart and Ken Ham together for a game show, with a panel consisting of Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Bill Nye the Science Guy, and Richard Dawkins. Oh, and John Hodgman in a beard as Charles Darwin. Something like

              I did not discover, much less invent, Evolution. Indeed, the idea of evolution was familiar to the Pre-Socratics. It was discussed in modern scientific terms in the 18th century, long before I set out on the Beagle, but had not been explained. Evolution is not a theory. It is a fact, which we saw dimly in a myriad other facts, and now see more clearly every day as we gather more and more facts. My theoretical contributions to explaining Evolution were Natural Selection and Selection in Relation to Sex, both of which are easily observable and have been amply and extensively confirmed.
              But much funnier.

              Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

              by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:46:29 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Looking far ahead... (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SilentBrook, tethys

              True, perhaps -- but the ability to eventually pass a constitutional amendment outlawing slavery was many, many decades away.  On the other hand, the economic threat of blocking the expansion of the internal slave trade was immediate -- and made more urgent by increasing soil exhaustion (by imprudent agricultural practices) in the deep South.  The only way the Southern slave aristocracy could continue to live in the manner to which it had grown accustomed was to force the expansion of the realm where slavery was allowed, the sooner, the better.

              Lincoln was a threat to the South only in that he would not be an ally in expanding slave territory -- but probably this wasn't too important, as popular opinion in the non-South no longer supported expansion.  Lincoln's election was seen as an opportunity not because he was actually expected to be a "tyrant", but because he was expected to be weak and ineffectual, and unable to mobilize a powerful military effort to oppose the South's conquest of the border states and west.

      •  So this means Napolitano is sort of correct in (0+ / 0-)

        what he said.  

        he had no qualms about endorsing the Crittenden amendment if it would restrict slavery to the states where it was already established, and that Congress should recommend to the Northern states that they repeal their "personal liberty" laws that hampered the return of fugitive slaves.
      •  I always feel the need to point out (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SilentBrook, Charles Hall, tethys

        the irony of the "states' rights" argument, when the Southern states didn't want northern states to have the right to refuse to send fugitive slaves back.

    •  Yes, it's true (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Lincoln was willing to sign an amendment to the Constitution that made slavery legal in the slave states. He just refused to budge on allowing slavery to go to any other areas. The South rejected that deal, obviously, and even more states withdrew from the Union. Because, as one of the historians in the video said, slavery wasn't dying, it was growing in the US. The slaveowners were itching to spread it to new territories and were willing to fight a war over it to do so.

      Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

      by moviemeister76 on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:49:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The end of the segment was awesome. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Stewart almost fell to the floor laughing.

    Most of the people taking a hard line against us are firmly convinced that they are the last defenders of civilization... The last stronghold of mother, God, home and apple pie and they're full of shit! David Crosby, Journey Thru the Past.

    by Mike S on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 09:42:02 AM PDT

  •  Wow. (8+ / 0-)

    Proud of my colleagues.  That is academia in the public fucking service.

    Napolitano is a scummy racist pig.

  •  Guns, Slaves, One Thing (7+ / 0-)

    Clearly to the right (wrong) there is a conflation between guns and slaves as right-ful property and that any - any - attempt to limit or regulate such property runs completely counter to (white) freedom.

    White men can stand their ground against Skittles and popcorn, just like white slave owners were right to challenge the integrity of the country for their own greedy purposes.

    Wait, that is the same argument we see today...

    Today is the tomorrow we worried about yesterday.

    by Long Haul on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 10:42:53 AM PDT

    •  Whereas corporations are not property (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dewtx, SilentBrook, kingfishstew

      but people. So why, I ask, does the Thirteenth Amendment not apply to them? If corporations had no owners, but were all reconstituted as non-profits, where would we be?

      Cloud-Cuckoo-Land, of course. Where we already are.

      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

      by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:00:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Guns=Slavery Is Our Own Brazenly Stupid Revision (0+ / 0-)

      There have been claims that the Second Amendment was passed to protect slave owners, and Tom Hartmann cites laws that were passed during the French and Indian war. And that is a brazenly  specious argument that amounts to an anti-intellectual poke in the eye with a blunt stick.  It's as if he's stretching to make the most blatantly stupid and  dishonest argument possible.

      We had militias during that period because America was dragged into a world war, and in America this was the war between England France to control the Ohio River valley and upstate NY into Canada.  Like many proxy wars such as Vietnam, much of this was guerrilla warfare, with atrocities, massacres, torture, genocide, assassination, false flag attacks, and killings that took place during truce talks.

      The Seven Years' War was a world war that took place between 1754 and 1763 with the main conflict being in the seven-year period 1756–1763. It involved most of the great powers of the time and affected Europe, North America, Central America, the West African coast, India, and the Philippines. In the historiography of some countries, the war is alternatively named after combatants in the respective theatres: the French and Indian War (North America, 1754–63); Pomeranian War (with Sweden and Prussia, 1757–62); Third Carnatic War (on the Indian subcontinent, 1757–63); and Third Silesian War (with Prussia and Austria, 1756–63).
      For  the colonists, their main worry wasn't slavery, it was  being sucked into the raging conflict between the French and English over the North American continent.  "The Last Of The Mohicans" was set in 1757, if that helps people focus on what was really happening during that era.

      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

      by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:05:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The colonies south of Maryland were not in the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        French and Indian War, except tangentially at the Maryland-Virginia border. Southern militias were explicitly meant to hunt for fugitive slaves, punish Native American tribes that took in fugitive slaves, and suppress slave rebellions. Northern militias were generally Abolitionist, and sometimes clashed violently with Federal authorities enforcing the Fugitive Slave act.

        Historian Herbert Aptheker found roughly 250 instances of slave rebellion in the British colonies and the United States. The largest before the Revolution was the Stono Rebellion of 1739, suppressed by the South Carolina militia.

        The Last of the Mohicans is a historical fantasy set in upper New York. It has nothing to do with the situation in the South.

        Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

        by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 01:27:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Wrong Again (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          The French Indian War was for control of Canada and the area from the colonies to the Mississippi River.  This is where the British got control of the Gulf Coast and France gave the rest of LA to the Spanish.  The Spanish were shorthanded so they brought displaced Canadians from land lost by France to settle NOLA and that's why the Cajuns speak French! Because France lost, and those were the refugees. America would get the lands to the west in the Louisiana Purchase.


          Louisiana (French: La Louisiane; by 1879, La Louisiane française) or French Louisiana[1] was an administrative district of New France. Under French control from 1682–1762 and 1802–04, the area was named in honor of Louis XIV, by French explorer René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de la Salle. It originally covered an expansive territory that included most of the drainage basin of the Mississippi River and stretched from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico and from the Appalachian Mountains to the Rocky Mountains. Louisiana was divided into two regions, known as Upper Louisiana (French: Haute-Louisiane), which began north of the Arkansas River, and Lower Louisiana (French: Basse-Louisiane). The present-day U.S. state of Louisiana is named for the historical region, although it occupies only a small portion of the territory claimed by the French.[1]
          France ceded the rest of New France, except the islands of St. Pierre and Miquelon, to Great Britain and Spain at the Treaty of Paris, which ended the Seven Years War (the French and Indian War). Britain received the lands east of the Mississippi River that lay between the Thirteen Colonies and Louisiana, which included Canada, Acadia, and parts of Louisiana, while Spain received the territory to the west – the larger portion of Louisiana. Spain returned its portion of Louisiana to France in 1800 under the secret Treaty of San Ildefonso, but French leader Napoleon Bonaparte sold it to the United States in the Louisiana Purchase of 1803, permanently ending French colonial efforts on the North American mainland.

          Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

          by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 01:39:58 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  None of which has anything to do with the fact (0+ / 0-)

            that there were no hostilities between the French and any colony south of Maryland. There were, of course, British forces under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel George Washington involved in starting the war at Jumonville, in what is now Pennsylvania.

            Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

            by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 02:36:31 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Still Doesn't Support Tom Hartmann's Claim (0+ / 0-)

              That the Second Amendment was for the benefit of southern plantation owners, when America had just emerged from the Revolutionary War and the French & Indian War.

              When the Constitution was being written, internal rebellions were very much on the mind of the framers, because Shay's rebellion had just occurred.  James Iredell of NC wrote about Shays Rebellion, but he made no mention of slave rebellions.

              Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

              by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 03:09:06 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  But guns made American-scale slavery feasible (0+ / 0-)

                The gun culture of the South rests on the myth of the white Christian Patriarch who owns property.  That contacts with slavery on so many levels that it's like a sick joke poisoning America's soul.  Proof?  Do you think blacks who aren't token right-wingers will ever be allowed to form armed militias in the future South?  An armed force representing actual black positions will always be labeled a terrorist force.  That's the invisible ink in the 2nd Amendment whether you like it or not.

                It's no wonder that Canadians have such a different history with guns than we do.

          •  I think you are both right and wrong (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            The biggest battles in the French-Indian War did take place north of North Carolina. However, the Carolinas and the other southern states were very much involved in the War. The states raised troops and capital specifically for the war.

            However, there is also no doubt that the southern states, during the Constitutional Convention, had more than just the French-Indian War on their minds. Slave rebellions and runaways were becoming quite a big deal and something many slaveowners feared at that time. Some of the slaveowners at the convention feared the northern politicians who talked of banning slavery as well. So they wanted to ensure that they could both have the means to put down any sort of slave rebellions, and not have to rely on a federal government which one day might not support slavery anymore, to do it.

            Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

            by moviemeister76 on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 02:46:31 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  When Did SC First Start Talking Secession? (0+ / 0-)

              Because they were talking about a civil war before the Constitution was passed, they still talked about it after it passed, then before the Civil War, and after the Civil War.

              Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

              by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 02:51:22 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  You are extremely confused (0+ / 0-)

            Les Acadiens were being forcibly expelled from their homeland before the Seven Years war broke out.

            The region that is east Tennessee and Alabama was not colonized by either the British or the French before the French and Indian War. The war was not fought there.

            Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

            by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 03:10:25 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That Area Was Under Dispute For Decades (0+ / 0-)

              They were a sort of semi-autonomous region with a distinct culture from Quebec.  There's a pretty good wikipedia entry on the Acadiens which I read last week.  There were a couple diasporas, and some even made the round trip from Europe back to Canada and got exiled again.

              Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

              by bernardpliers on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 03:27:12 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Three Thumbs Up (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    for "That's not true!"

    "People should not be afraid of their government; governments should be afraid of their people." --V

    by MikeTheLiberal on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 11:54:26 AM PDT

  •  That isn't Larry Wilmore (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dewtx, SilentBrook

    It's Jessica Williams.

    I know. They all look alike in a beard. {Ducks and covers.}

    Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

    by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 11:58:18 AM PDT

    •  Then how do you know it wasn't (0+ / 0-)

      Samuel L. Jackson? ;')

      We build on foundations we did not lay. We warm ourselves by fires we did not light. We sit in the shade of trees we did not plant... We are ever bound in community.-Peter Raible

      by SilentBrook on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 04:56:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hyperbolic (0+ / 0-)

    "Rip apart" is hyperbole. This is a delightful exchange between two very intelligent, warm, well-informed scholars – Stewart and Napolitano – over what would have been the right way to end slavery – an institution which Napolitano was avid to describe in the most disparaging terms.

    There are few things more stimulating and gratifying than disagreeing vehemently with someone toward whom you feel great respect and affection, which s/he reciprocates. The casting of Napolitano as a bad guy here is gratuitous and unfortunate. He wanted slavery to end as much as Stewart did, but had different assumptions about what would have best accomplished that with the lowest financial and human cost. So they are allies in the ends they seek, and adversaries only in the means to get there. That isn't inconsequential, especially where human rights are concerned, but it doesn't make Napolitano a colluder when it comes to slavery.

    •  What? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Napolitano is flat out wrong in much of what he says. Deliberately so. He's carrying on the tradition of holding up the Lost Cause mythology that began pretty much the day the Civil War ended.

      Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

      by moviemeister76 on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:51:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The mythology goes back to before Beauregard (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        moviemeister76, SilentBrook

        started the shooting at Fort Sumter, indeed long before Lincoln's election. Lincoln himself exposed much of it in his Cooper Union Address, shredding the Original Intent argument of Senator Stephen Douglas and the South generally, which claimed that none of the founders "who understood the question as well as, or better than, we" ever envisioned Congress forbidding slavery in any territory.

        The sum of the whole is, that of our thirty-nine fathers who framed the original Constitution, twenty-one – a clear majority of the whole – certainly understood that no proper division of local from federal authority, nor any part of the Constitution, forbade the Federal Government to control slavery in the federal territories…
        I could link to some of the modern propaganda against Lincoln, but we don't have enough brain bleach.

        Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

        by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 02:27:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  clarifying "12 Million" to the AMERICAS... ? (0+ / 0-)

    a great many Americans in the US of A... read that and think that pretty much all of the estimated 12 million were shipped to America... as in: the USA...
    and that for the whole of the slave trade... Britain and the Colonies were the slave traders for the whole Atlantic slave trade era with other places sort of footnotes...

    And the reality?

    As many others do know:

    "Only a fraction of the enslaved Africans brought to the New World ended up in British North America—perhaps 5%. The vast majority of slaves shipped across the Atlantic were sent to the Caribbean sugar colonies, Brazil, or Spanish America."

    ...that means the total to North America and that includes Canada too, would be up to 600,000 over 192 years. That total number of slaves arrived from roughly 1619 up to 1808 when importation was banned. But the numbers of transported Africans remained small until around 1680. So most of the 600,000 arrived 1680-1808 or for about 128 years... with fewer in the early part and a lot more in the last several decades up to 1808.. but overall the average per year starting in 1680 is 4688.
    and if 10% more than that number represents an estimate of those who died in transit then it was an average of 469 deaths per year at sea times 128 years or about 60,000 in total.

    That number is not comparable to total deaths on Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch and English ships headed elsewhere over 300 plus years from @1500 to the end of slavery in Brazil @ 1870. The rest of the transport deaths for all of the Americas works out to 1.2 million - 10% of 12 million. And that number certainly dwarfs both the share of transit deaths for slaves bound to the colonies or the early USA and the US civil war dead. But this comparison is not useful since 500,000 or 700,000 dead in 4 years is a horrendous death rate with more in one year than the total of 128 years of transit deaths at sea share of slaves bound for North America.

    So why was the North American share of the Atlantic slave trade only 5% of the total? The main flood of slaves was for Sugar and sugar products... Rum. And sugar was grown in Brazil and the Caribbean Islands on huge plantations with huge numbers of slaves... who in the earlier years were so inexpensive that it was cost effective to work them to death over just a few years and replace them.

    The economics of slavery in North America were not on the same scale... Tobacco and other crops were not creating vast wealth from exports. Up until 1705 numbers of Africans held in some form of indentured involuntary servitude from temporary indentured servants or close to chattel slaves was not all that large... until the laws changed along with economic factors like a growing scarcity of indentured white labor.That drove reasons to lock in the idea of permanent chattel slavery just for Africans AND laws cementing the idea that children born to slaves were slaves.

    It was not until the Slave Codes of 1705 that the status of African Americans as slaves would be sealed. This status would last for another 160 years, until after the end of the American Civil War with the ratification of the 13th Amendment in December 1865.
    But in those areas that did not become economically addicted to the need for plantation labor did not have anywhere as many slaves and banning it in the North began almost with the birth of the nation albeit with a lot of foot dragging.

    Vermont banned slavery in 1777 and the rest of the North eventually followed suit but in several cases banned new slaves and children born to slaves were free but existing slaves remained slaves unless they bought their freedom or were granted it by their owners...

    The importation or export of slaves was banned on 1 January 1808; but not the internal slave trade.
    And slavery in the Southern United States would not have grown as it did and become so economically important had the cotton gin not been invented when and where it was... Suddenly it was economical to have huge plantations with a great many slaves... cotton was an international cash crop needed to feed the new industrial revolution mills in Europe and in the North.

    Most of the slave population in this boom time for slavery was native born... no more imported new slaves though there were smuggled slaves from the West Indies to feed the demand.

    So I hope that people more people will notice the "S" in Americas and why that is not America.....

    Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

    by IreGyre on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:23:34 PM PDT

  •  I contend that this amount of attention paid (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    moose67, SilentBrook

    to something like this only serves to highlight the absolutely lousy state of this country's education system after 35 years of political tampering with course requirements, textbooks and broadcast media manipulation by evangelical fundamentalist  philosophical terrorists.

    More to the point, I am relieved beyond words that my children are grown, received reasonably good educations at Boston University and U.C. Berkeley and we didn't live anywhere near Texas or similar education cesspools while they were growing up.

  •  The issue with the "buy up all the slaves" tactic (0+ / 0-)

    Let's say I went to Albertsons, or whatever your supermarket chain is, and purchased every box of cereal on their shelves as a way to eliminate cereal ownership, would I end Albertsons' cereal sales?

    No, the company would have acquired more cereal, and I'd have boxes of cereal with no location for them.

    Of course, it's not a perfect comparison. There's no moral issue with cereal boxes being property.

    •  Say you go to buy up all the slaves (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      on the open market, outbidding the locals at every slave auction. They bid against you, the more freely as you make it plain that you will outbid them no matter how high the price goes. Even if you don't do that, you drive up the prices for slaves everywhere, and those who want to acquire slaves may abandon the public auctions and go to private sales on the black market. This increases the value of slave breeding, smuggling, and stealing free persons (as in Twelve Years a Slave). Now you are pouring money down a rat hole, with no end in sight.

      And in the end, you come up against those who will not sell at any price, as happened when Lincoln and Congress offered to buy out slaves in the border states.

      It was noted on the show last night that the book value of all industrial capital in the North ($2.5 billion) was less than the book value of the slaves in the South ($3 billion), even without considering the obvious market forces that would have driven up prices further, as I described above. Where could that kind of money come from?

      And then, what do you do with the ex-slaves? Send them to Africa? Let the former slaveowners reduce them to serfdom, as in the actual Jim Crow system?

      There were no good solutions, and we went with a bad one that was forced upon us. It took a century more for public opinion to shift enough to allow the Civil Rights movement, and it is taking another century for the South to get over itself. See, for example, my Diary The Young South is Ourss for a positive indication. There are many others.

      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

      by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 03:12:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Quibbles? (0+ / 0-)

    The notion that the value of the slaves was roughly $3 Billion while the value of all banks, railroads, and factories was about $2.5 Billion seems to underestimate the full cost of the war vs slavery.

    Casualties in the hundreds of thousands. Watch Gone With the Wind again. Srsly. Young men came home in coffins or on peg legs or worse. Pretty young women were eager to marry ole fossils because that's all the market had to offer. Meanwhile many of the soldiers, and many of their children, lost several years of schooling, destroying more intellectual capital, not to forget the value of four years or so of their own work, massive casualties among highly trained horses as well as mules, then the War followed by economic breakdown in Dixie when common people couldn't pay their taxes and lost their land, etc etc.

    The Southerners, especially the rich ones with many slaves (but also those who thought they could one day get to own slaves), feared a loss of wealth from any chipping away at slavery. So they dynamited the whole damn thing.

    They only "more or less" lost the slaves after the War. Less so than it should have been. After Reconstruction many freedmen were re-captured into a tenant-farming system that was slavery-lite. That is, master remained master except only he couldn't break up families and sell the members down the various rivers. But otherwise, "different day, same slavery" across most of Dixie for almost 100 more years.

    They don't teach that part on Fox either.

    But for sure they lost many sons, husbands, friends and others with a degree of post-war suffering this country had never seen before or since. A reckless and very costly move by the Confederates.

  •  I've loved the Daily Show from its very beginning (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    including the Kilbourn years.  But this was the Daily Show's finest hour.

    A few years ago I moved from Virginia to Illinois.  Before leaving Virginia, I toured the Confederate White House.  When I got to central Illinois, I toured the Lincoln Library.  Both of these museums are respectable institutions but the difference in how they characterize the attack on Fort Sumter was very stark.

    Here is the biggest fact that I use to shut down War of Northern Aggression B.S: South Carolina seceded before Lincoln was even officially elected.  (By the electoral college.) Six more states seceded before he was inaugurated.  He didn't start a war, he inherited a rebellion.  And he quelled it.

    For once, it really is that simple.

    "Unrestricted immigration is a dangerous thing -- look at what happened to the Iroquois." Garrison Keillor

    by Spider Stumbled on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 12:33:32 PM PDT

  •  One of Napolitano's many idiocies was (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mokurai, SilentBrook

    his effort to blame Lincoln for the Fugitive Slave Law. Of course, it was great that when he said Lincoln continued to use US marshals to recover fugitive slaves after the war started, all three professors said in unison "That's not true." But Napolitano's entire premise is wrong.

    The Constitution itself says, "No Person held to Service or Labour in one State, under the Laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in Consequence of any Law or Regulation therein, be discharged from such Service or Labour, but shall be delivered up on Claim of the Party to whom such Service or Labour may be due." Art. IV., Sec. 2. So the tragic recovery of escaped slaves had been a feature of US jurisprudence from the founding. This section was put into effect by the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793.

    Over the next decades, Northern states passed "personal liberty laws" which made it illegal for their officials to return escaped slaves. Of course, the diehard states' rights supporters in the South made an exception to states' rights when it came to slavery, and vigorously, even violently protested such laws. Finally, in the Compromise of 1850, a new Fugitive Slave Act was passed, which was incredibly harsh. It required state officials to cooperate and punished those who did not. It also gave no rights to a purported slave to try to show he/she was in fact free. Hard to see what Lincoln, who was only elected in 1860 and only took office in 1861, had to do with passing the FSA.

    Once the Civil War began, the practice of returning slaves ended. (remember Gen. Butler's refusal of a Confederate officer's fugitive slave claim? He called the slaves "contraband of war.")

  •  Civil War (0+ / 0-)

    Faux new tries once again to make the deep South lazy, dirty, smelly, white scum (early tea party Ayatollahs) look like they wanted to just get along before the nasty North made them fight and follow civilized rules and regulations. Now the new tea party is trying to kill Mother Earth.

  •  Damn, that should have gone on a lot longer! I was (0+ / 0-)

    learning something!

  •  Too disgusted to chuckle (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook, kingfishstew

    What I think is that for anyone who has ever read factual historical documentation, stared at the visual trauma, or watched well-researched documentaries like Ken Burns' The Civil War or even Henry Louis Gates' African-American Lives, can only watch in sheer disgust and anger at the outrageous dismissiveness and complete callousness displayed in this segment, in particular of that moron Napolitano.

    I think about the families that were torn apart, the women and girls repeatedly raped, or the mothers that made terrible, horrible decisions in order to prevent their children from becoming slaves, much less the number of lives lost. Or the fact that most Af-Americans can't trace their families back...

    Shockingly, his argument or his gripe is more about the money spent, or his beef w/ the federal government (and Lincoln) exerting its powers over seditious actions, then about what is considered one this nation's worst human experimental failings. Or how those 'failings' went on to increase domestic terrorism, institute systemic racial inequities still felt in 2014, or has cultivated a South that continues to undermine our government, and this nation today.

    My father grew up in Baton Rouge, LA, and when he was a young boy, he remembers attending the annual Veteran's Day Parade in which his attention was caught by an old man wearing a grey uniform, complete w/ a peg wooden leg. He stood out against all the WWI or WWII, Spanish-American War vets. Of course he was there to proudly display his Confederate uniform.

    There is a funny satirical movie called C.S.A. - Confederate States of America -- an uncomfortable, yet humorous take on what life might be like if the South had won. Listening to people like Napolitano, and given the way Southern States are governing themselves these days, I have to wonder how 'inaccurate' or 'satirical' the movie would be.

  •  If I didn't already know that... (0+ / 0-)

    "Judge" Napolitano is a Fake News contributor, I would think after reading that transcript that he was a Daily Show plant portraying the Daily Show's idea of an idiotic Fake News contributor.

  •  the hatred is strong in this one... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It is amazing how much hatred for people this man has...he hates that "millions" were killed during the civil war (cause they were white men) and not so much about slaves...well you know why.

    Don't meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.

    by Whitewitch on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 02:13:20 PM PDT

  •  Blame Eli Whitney (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    This is why it's always a good thing to take the local transportation when visiting a park, city, you name it.

    My wife and I were visiting Savannah GA and took a tour on the local trolley. For those of you who ever watched the show Connections on PBS, stay with me.

    The south during the revolutionary war days was a disaster until Washington dispatched Nathanael Greene to take charge. The turnaround was nothing short of spectacular. After the war, the people around Savannah were so appreciative they gave Greene a plantation called Mulberry Grove. [Note: The plantation was just across the river from Savannah on the SC side.]

    Greene, a New England native and probably not used to the southern heat and humidity, died of sunstroke a year after the war while riding his horse. His widow met someone, also from New England, who agreed to move to South Carolina to tutor the Greene children.

    The man's name: Eli Whitney.

    Whitney saw the the labor required to pull the seeds from the picked cotton and invented the cotton gin. Here's where the story gets relevant to the current thread:

    According to an episode from the history channel, slavery was indeed starting to wane because the cost of picking cotton and de-seeding the white fluff was becoming too expensive, expensive because of the labor required; a person could de-seed one pound of cotton per day. The cotton gin reversed the downward trend; one cotton gin could de-seed 55 lbs per day! The result was that the planting of cotton, and the need for slaves, exploded in places like Texas.

    Now, do I "blame" Eli Whitney for the Civil War? No. Just like in the Connections program I don't blame the person whose discovery of Byzantinium in mid-evil times led to the current crop of Republicans.

    It's just another facet to ponder.  

    Below is a link with more info.

  •  Just as many believe the lie of Lincoln (0+ / 0-)

    The 13th reads; " to the Constitution declared that "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction." Formally abolishing slavery in the United States, the 13th Amendment was passed by the Congress on January 31, 1865, and ratified by the states on December 6, 1865."
         Now, where is it that it truly says that slavery is abolished? As such, equivocation continues to this day concerning this and  it should truly be cleared up. For further facts; When a person is convicted(of a felony, for example)in the state of Kansas, for instance, they must: register as an offender for 15 years AFTER they have served their sentence which includes paying $20 to the county of their residence and if they work/go to school in any other countie(s) they must do they same every 90 DAYS and renew their drivers licence every year on their birthday. Also, not too many decent paying jobs wish to hire felons. How is this just? How is this not a form of proxy slavery at its least? Upon these facts I do not believe the lie of Lincoln freeing any slaves, he just legalized it. Anyone agree/disagree?

  •  History (0+ / 0-)

    Is it by consensus now? BTW it is the War Between the States not civil war.

    •  The names of things are not immutable facts (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      laid down by some Language Academy or a Humpty-Dumpty with lexicographical powahz. Names are what people call things, for a variety of reasons. In some parts, it is still the War of the Confederates, Mr. Lincoln's War, the War of Northern Aggression, or worse.

      The name American Civil War, or just the Civil War, is far more common than the War Between the States.

      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

      by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 03:30:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I went and looked (0+ / 0-)

        It's worse than I thought. "The War Between the States" began as a Neo-Confederate meme.

        The Confederate and Neo-Confederate Reader: The "Great Truth" about the "Lost Cause" by James W. Loewen and Edward H. Sebesta

        They even renamed the war, at least in Dixie; for fifty years it became the War Between the States.
        They refer to Confederate Vice-President Alexander H. Stephens, in his book A Constitutional View of the Late War Between the States, which is a major source for the lie that the Civil War was about States' Rights rather than slavery. As Loewen and Sebesta point out, South Carolina was enraged that Northern states wished to exert their rights against the Fugitive Slave law, and said so in its secession declaration. Several other states copied that argument in their own documents.

        Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

        by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:24:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Surprised right wingnuts haven't complained yet (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smileycreek, SilentBrook

    about Jessica Williams playing Abraham Lincoln.  Because unlike Santa and Jesus we know that he was a white man.  But then I remembered that one of the slurs against Lincoln in the rebels' minds during the Civil War was that he was part black (although of course they used the n-word).

  •  Look at the secession documents! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook, kingfishstew

    I am very proud of my fellow historians who appeared on The Daily Show.  I have read the works of Eric Foner and his is brilliant.

    When they left the Union the seceding states clearly stated that the reason they were seceding was because of slavery.  Save the "lost cause" rhetoric and nonsense.  The Civil War was caused by slavery.  

    The states could care less about "states rights."  One of their major complaints is that free states would not allow them to enter with their slaves (you know, for vacations and the like).  They did not care about "other" states and their "rights."  State's rights was just code words for slavery.

    This is covered extensively in the primary documents by Dr. James Loewen in his book "The Confederate and Neo-Confederate Reader."  I highly recommend it.

  •  What I love is that Napolitano says he would (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilentBrook, kingfishstew

    have fought with the slaves if they had risen up into an armed rebellion.

    Napolitano never served in our nation's military. Sure he would have joined a guerrilla movement. Sure he would.

    Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

    by Spud1 on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 04:08:02 PM PDT

  •  Kinda new here (0+ / 0-)

    I see that all of the comments are about the Stewart vid and none of them are about the Colbert vid. What's up with that? Reason I'm new here is because I just moved over from the Puffington Host. They've become such a damn joke they should IMHO, be pretty embarrassed with their thin skinned censors pretending to be moderators. But when I comment there and get a reply it shows up in my email Does it work that way here too? Or not?

    •  There is a link for you to see (0+ / 0-)

      replies to your comments. It is under your name at the top right of the page along with other useful navigation links. I usually keep a tab open to that Replies display, and refresh it once in a while.

      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

      by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 05:27:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Slavery (0+ / 0-)

    It's interesting that these all knowing folks , panel. judges, and posters never mention that the North had slaves also.  One of the scientific magazines did an excellent piece several years ago, about a northern home, still standing, that had a narrow hallway, down the back of it, with a hidden opening in the kitchen. At the other end of the house was a room, and stairs to a room in the basement. Outside, the home measured longer than it did, inside, because of no ready access to the hidden room. The room in the basement had earth up against the inside wall, so that it was invisible to anyone using the cellar to get stored onions, beets, or anything else normally stored below ground. The owner went to great lengths to hide what was happening inside.
    The article appeared in Smithsonian, or Nature maybe 15 years ago. It had excellent photographs, and gave the history of the home.
    Blaming the South for everything is OK I suppose. We've gotten used to it. We don't agree, but it's become typical .
    Something some of us wonder about : Why, after coming South, and burning our homes, killing our people, and destroying everything many folks owned , and winning the war, did the North just walk off and leave it ? If I had wanted to make the South as wonderful as I'm lead to believe the North is, I would have stayed behind and done something with my captured loot, and land. But that's just me.

    •  What sort of propaganda was in your (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      history books?

      Lincoln wanted to rebuild the South. But the Civil War continued in Congress, between the Radical Republicans and the Redeemer Democrats, the nation's second Party of No after the Federalists in Jefferson's time. There was also open political war between the "Carpetbaggers", a mixed bag of Northern Whites who went South, some to help and some only to profit, and the "Scalawags", Southern Whites who set out to demonize them all.

      All ideas of helping the South rebuild and of helping former slaves become full citizens ended in 1876, when "Rutherfraud" B. Hayes made a deal with the Redeemer Democrats to remove the last occupying Federal troops from the South in exchange for their votes in the disputed Presidential election. Florida had sent two sets of electors, one for each candidate, and the result elsewhere was close enough for that to throw the decision to the House of Representatives.

      After that, the South was free to destroy itself with Jim Crow, which crippled its economy in the name of White Supremacy.

      On the other hand, consider Neil Gaiman on Anti-South Prejudice.

      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

      by Mokurai on Wed Mar 12, 2014 at 06:38:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The Freedman's Bureau (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      While you're wallowing in your "Yankees had slaves too" trip, consider these facts:

      1.  There were Northerners who went South to help rebuild after the war; they were called the Freedman's Bureau.  They studied the deep disease of the racist socioeconomic system of the South and argued that ex-slaves could not be helped unless the federal govt also improved the lives of the poor whites whom the rich manipulated into the enforcers of racism.  But this wasn't done.  Because by 19th C. standards, perhaps, this massive govt program would be accused of being SOCIALISM?

      2.  Here's what it took for slavery to be abolished in Massachusetts in 1776, according to Henry Louis Gates.  An elderly black woman was told the Declaration of Independence said that all men were created equal.  She went to an attorney to sue her owner for her freedom on those grounds.  He argued the case to a jury of white man - and they sided with her.  By precedent, all the slaves of Massachusetts were freed.

      To compare that with how your beloved South deformed the Constitution and congressional representation with endless threats and obfuscation and atrocities like the Fugitive Slave Act to hold on to their slaves at ALL costs, including the possible breakup of our nation into a bunch of banana republics, is a sick joke.  Stop with the pity party and start asking why your state GOP is likely scheming at this very moment with a lot of your white fellow citizens to legislate away the votes of blacks AGAIN.  Where will it end this time?

  •  Disingenuosity (0+ / 0-)

    " Nearly 12 million Africans were forcibly removed to the Americas in the African slave trade."

    "... to the AMERICAS ..." - that's North America, Central America and South America, and for all we know, the Islands, as well.

    Talk about "revisionism" ...

  •  Lies, Disinformation, Misinformation & Distortions (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    That's Fox News; always has been and always will be. Only a spoon fed puppet would believe anything coming out of Murdoch's media operations.

  •  Fugitive Slave Acts (0+ / 0-)

    The FIRST one, in 1794, was the basis for the supposed actions of "12 Years a Slave", in which Solomon Northrup, a free black man living in the north, was kidnapped and sold into slavery in Georgia.  The second one was enacted as part of the Missouri Compromise of 1850, by far one of the worst compromises our Congress has ever signed names to.  Northrup's diary, translated into the cinematography of "12 Years a Slave", depicts an America divided from its very first days on the issue of the ownership of human "property".  The movie, as did "The Passion of Christ" graphically depicts the horrors and the inhumanity of the subject, exposing the nobility of the slaves and the depravity and hypocrisy of their "masters".

  •  This isn't even close to getting at the absurdity (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    resa, kingfishstew

    This isn't even close to getting at the absurdity of Judge Napolitano's historically preposterous comments.

    The first paper on President Lincoln's desk the morning of his inauguration was from the commander of Fort Sumter saying that without reinforcements he would have to surrender; even cuttin his men to half rations he could not hold out much longer.

    Read lincoln's 1st Inaugural Address — it was ALL about preserving the Union not about ending slavery. Anyone who questions that, can read Fredrick Douglass' very disappointed reaction. This entire argument is right-wing bollox to appease Libertarian misunderstandings of what it means to be an American.

    However if American democracy fails — which it is on the brink of doing as we speak — historians will trace that failure back to the pollution of American democracy with dysfunctional Southern, Libertarian, racist nonsense.

     America would be a more viable country without the former Confederate states and a far better place, even at the loss of much grace, charm and a lot of Spanish moss and mosquitos.

    I have lived on four continents, I've lived in a village in Africa and in a Stalinist block apartment in Moscow yet I've  never felt as much an alien as when I lived in the American South — the last place I lived before I left America, probably, forever.  

    The south is a separate country.

    Within days of his inauguration, Lincoln sent his Springfield friend Stephen Hurlbut to Charleston, where he had grown up and where his sister still lived to take the temperature of South Carolina. Hurlbut returned with “no hesitation in reporting as unquestionable” that Unionist sentiment in both city and state was dead, “that separate nationality is a fixed fact.”  That is the fact. These people see themselves as citizens of a different country and they hate Yankee America.

    While that feeling is diluted to nonexistent in many who reside in the South, it is the overriding concern of Jim DeMints and of the Jefferson Beauregard Sessions IIIs in the Senate.  These people are not American in any way that I respect the term.  Certainly Sessions repeatedly calling a Black fellow US attorney "Boy" reveals that... to say nothing of DeMint's agenda at the former think-tank that he has hijacked.

    If you don't control the behavior these traitors, America is toast.

  •  Slavery after it was illegal to trade them. (0+ / 0-)

    Slave ships from Africa still plied their trade. The punishment would have been no more than a slap on the wrist compared to the rewards for bringing a slave ship into a southern port.
    In fact nothing has changed. Long after European countries had banned the drug, Thalidomine, The drug that caused babies to be born deformed, we were still issuing it to pregnant women. Compare the fines given to most industries for not repairing deficiencies in coal mines, oil drilling and factors in other industries and you will find it is only a small fraction of the cost of doing business, and the fines were tax deductible!

  •  Oh. My. Fucking. Gawd. (0+ / 0-)

    I just watched the first segment of this (thank you, DVR technology); and, all I can say is the long arm of the Revisionist Party (aka The Corporatist Party, aka the RepubliMoron Party) got rammed up his assistant to move his mouth and spew this utter bullshit!

    I knew the RepubliMorons were desperate to convince themselves and the world that their views on things were "right" (you know, "trickle-down economics", "womens' non-rights", "unregulation for the betterment of control artists and the 1%"), but this is a new fucking low.

    I'm waiting to see the New RepubliMoron Bible and it's chapter non how Jesus eradicated the dinosaurs because they tasted like chicken...

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