There will no doubt be many points to discuss. On this thread, if you find an answer to my question, please let us know.
Here was the question:
"Is there any direct and explicit statement of a legal right of secession in the whole Founding Era, from 1774 to and including the Hartford Convention? I don't mean such cloudy things as the Virginia "reservation," cited in Williams column, which is, to put it mildly, easily read as a notice of the natural right of Revolution. I seek instead a simple and direct statement of a legal right of secession, preferably using the term itself. If so, could we see get it sourced?"
Great. But please answer me something. I confess to being a bit discouraged by the sequence of debate over the two published DiLorenzo pieces, for the following reason.
In my and rdf's first column, we said that Lincoln spoke hardly at all about economics in any form throughout the '50's. DiLorenzo replied that Lincoln had "championed his corrupt economic agenda" in "virtually every one of the Lincoln Douglas debates" and that he "bitterly denounced" the bank decision of the Supreme Court. in the Peoria speech.
DiLorenzo established the first point by citing a speech in which Lincoln accuses Douglas of a double standard for today demanding acquiesence in a Supreme Court decision, while he had earlier approved of President Jackson's exercise of independent judgment in opposition to a Supreme Court Decision.
He established to the second point by citing another speech in which Lincoln accuses Douglas of a double standard for today demanding acquiesence in a Supreme Court decision, while he had earlier approved of President Jackson's exercise of independent judgment in opposition to a Supreme Court Decision.
A simple reading of these two texts reveals that they are the equivalent of one of Reagan's 3x5 cards, that Lincoln found it useful to cite Douglas's response to the Bank decision to show that Douglas's demand for everyone to accept the Dred Scott decision was inconsistent. And yet these two references were DiLorenzo's exhibit A and B to prove that Lincoln was obsessed with economics.
We have not needed to wait for the book to settle this matter. DiLorenzo cites, not just carelessly but upon a challenge to his thesis, the Lincoln Douglas Debates and the Peoria speech as two places where Lincoln reveals his passionate support of Whig economics. Upon inspection, the passages prove to be about slavery. When this is pointed out in a second column, he refuses to acknowledge that the passages in question are simply not about economics.
You mentioned earlier that you had followed this discussion. Did you consult these two texts in Lincoln, and do you have any explanation for DiLorenzo's continued, public claim that Lincoln "championed" his economic agenda?
If we can't settle a matter so completely based on two simple texts in the public record, I don't see how we will be able to discuss an entire book in fairness and come to any agreement. What do you think?