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InquisitorGeneralis

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Reply with quote  #16 
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Originally Posted by Jacobite

As to the "war of northern aggression", yes the original intent of the founding fathers was altered by its end, but wasn't this a consequence of the necessity of the putting down of an unlawful rebellion against the legitimate government of the United States?  La Marseillaise was played in the South in 1861 not in North.

Wait a sec, why was it an unlawful rebellion?  I've always thought that, even if one grants the legitimacy of the American government, the states had an equally legitimate right to separate themselves from that government.


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Reply with quote  #17 
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Originally Posted by InquisitorGeneralis
Wait a sec, why was it an unlawful rebellion?  I've always thought that, even if one grants the legitimacy of the American government, the states had an equally legitimate rite to separate themselves from that government.


They did, at least arguably. Secession had been bandied about by various states both north and south at various times before the southern states finally did it and formed the Confederacy. Ironically, it was in the South, prior the War of Northern Agression, that you had an actual de facto aristocracy, and that it's initial independence was first (and essentially only) recognized by Ernst II of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, and (more arguably) by Pope Pius IX.
pauljluk

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Originally Posted by "Jacobite"
That the royal powers remain in theory, but are in fact exercised in by the government is dangerous in that the prime minister becomes an almost absolutist ruler. Our system at least allows the head of state to act on his own initiative and with real power to oppose the legislature through the use of the veto. Queen Anne was the last in England to use the veto. Monarchy should not be a mask for the exercise of excessive and unchecked power by those who temporarily control a parliament. There should be a distinction between a monarch and an auto-pen.

I would rather that unchecked power was exercised by someone whose position is temporary, who was elected and who is removable, than that it should be exercised by someone with no accountability, no mandate and who cannot be removed when he/she messes up.

 

The answer to the excessive exercise of power by a Prime Minister isn't to grant some of that power to an unelected monarch, who may or may not be intelligent or capable enough for the job, but to constrain the exercise of power by other legal and institutional means, e.g. an entrenched constitution and an electoral system and/or second chamber of Parliament which ensures that the PM does not have absolute control or power. That is the reality in most European monarchies, Britain being the exception.

 

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A good point, but the problem comes when the hereditary monarch has no real power in the political process. Better perhaps to  have a system in which power is exercised by those to whom the constitution assigns it rather than those to whom it has devolved over time. How to give the hereditary monarch actual and accepted power is the tricky question.

I don't see why that is the question at all. The question is how to ensure good government which respects the rights, liberties and wishes of the governed. Everything else - monarchy included - should be a means to that end.

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Catholic political thought would grant legitimacy to any system which bases its authority on the natural law.  The founding fathers did just this, though today it is threatened. Is it not more threatened in European constitutional monarchies where the sovereign is afraid to act or prohibited from doing so? Could the Governor General of Canada express her opposition to gay marriage or simply sign whatever offending bill is presented? The President of the United States, for all his numerous faults, supports a Constitutional Amendment banning such unions and will not be made to step down because of it.

Non-Catholic thought might say that the "natural law", in the sense that you use it, is a fiction. The only natural laws I know of are descriptive, not prescriptive, and devoid of any moral content, e.g. the laws of Thermodynamics.

 

The reason that the President can oppose gay marriage while the Governor General can't is that the President has an electoral mandate. In Canada, that mandate is held by the House of Commons.

BlueEmperor

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Originally Posted by Jacobite
Our system at least allows the head of state to act on his own initiative and with real power to oppose the legislature through the use of the veto. Queen Anne was the last in England to use the veto. Monarchy should not be a mask for the exercise of excessive and unchecked power by those who temporarily control a parliament. There should be a distinction between a monarch and an auto-pen.

...Could the Governor General of Canada express her opposition to gay marriage or simply sign whatever offending bill is presented? The President of the United States, for all his numerous faults, supports a Constitutional Amendment banning such unions and will not be made to step down because of it.

 

It is not the business of the monarch to interfere in such matters. If a government is elected on a particular platform and puts a Bill before Parliament and that Bill is passed, then the Sovereign has a duty to sign that Bill into law. The President of the United States has the electoral mandate to behave in a certain way. Monarchs, and Governors-General, have no such mandate. It is not for Her Majesty, or Her Excellency, to oppose things like 'gay marriage'.

 

B.E.


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Reply with quote  #20 
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Originally Posted by BlueEmperor

It is not the business of the monarch to interfere in such matters. If a government is elected on a particular platform and puts a Bill before Parliament and that Bill is passed, then the Sovereign has a duty to sign that Bill into law. The President of the United States has the electoral mandate to behave in a certain way. Monarchs, and Governors-General, have no such mandate. It is not for Her Majesty, or Her Excellency, to oppose things like 'gay marriage'.

 

B.E.

 

Unless its Unconstitutional or illegal of course.

 

Like you have said The Sovereign, or Vice-Regal representative, cant make an emotional judgement and refuse to give Royal Assent, especially when its against the will of the people.

 

The Sovereign and/or the Governor-Generals, Governors or Lieutenant Governors have a duty to uphold the Constitution and laws of those nations, states or provinces. Their duty is not to engage in petty politicial wrangling.

 

It must be remembered that a parliamentary Constitutional Monarchy is not a direct election republic.

royalcello

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Reply with quote  #21 
For a truly Catholic (and monarchist) understanding of the War of Northern Aggression, I would recommend this article:

http://www.catholicism.org/catholicism-south.html

Secession is not revolution. The Confederates did not seek to overthrow the government in Washington, nor did they owe allegiance to Abraham Lincoln as, for example, the Poles owed allegiance to the Tsar of Russia (which is why their rebellion was condemned by Pope Gregory XVI). The states (remember, the very word "state" implies sovereignty) existed before they voluntarily joined the Union. Clearly the Constitution does not give the federal government the power to prevent states from seceding; therefore it was Lincoln whose actions were illegitimate.

For me, having been brought up and educated to believe that the South was wrong, as a monarchist it was pivotal to learn that the Confederate government had friendly relations with Emperor Maximilian of Mexico while the Union government opposed the Mexican monarchy and aided its enemies, and that Karl Marx was a staunch supporter of the Union cause, which he regarded as the first great class struggle. Those facts combined with the issues of agrarianism versus industrialism, hierarchy versus egalitarianism, and localism versus centralism, made it clear to me that an American monarchist's sympathies ought to be with the Confederacy. As Gary Potter explains, the American Civil War was in some ways parallel to the English Civil War two centuries earlier, and in both cases the bad guys won.
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As to Catholic perceptions of this, romantic agrarianism is to be avoided.

 

Hmm, I don't quite follow how you perceive the South as standing for "romantic agrarianism". The South stood for its own way of life and its ability to live that life without the interference of the Federal Government. I daresay the Southerners would have fought just as hard if they had been industrialists. Granted, I do think that agraianism is certainly preferable to the might of industrialism, but to say the South was merely a Don Quixote championing blacks working in cotton fields per se is simply historically inaccurate.

 

Quote:
Most Catholics in the United States in 1861 supported and fought for many and died for the Union.  

Concedo....this is true. However I would say that they fought simply for their states, and for the perceived inustice many of them saw slavery as, and not to advance the Marxist ideologies Lincoln saw more than half a million men killed for. It is worth noting that the Catholics in that time, that you mention, were poor, simply educated immigrants, not the best minds Catholicism had to offer, and probably not in tune with, nor able to judge, the issues of the day. That being said, there are also many Catholics that have also taken part in many other unjust wars waged by Americans. That in and of itself does not make those wars justified.

 

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royalcello

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Reply with quote  #23 
I would add that while I live in North Carolina now, since I grew up in Michigan and Indiana, when I try to imagine myself in 1861 it's more as a Northerner opposed to invading the South, than as a Southerner gung-ho for secession and war. Even if I were to temporarily concede, purely for the sake of argument, that the South was wrong to secede, I still don't see how that could possibly justify sending thousands of young men to their deaths to preserve the Union. I certainly would not have been willing to fight for that. Why not just let the South go?
royalcello

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Reply with quote  #24 
As a monarchist, it's hardly surprising that I would side with a Tsar (Nicholas I) but not with a President (Lincoln) who was opposed to the Mexican monarchy and whose cause was backed by Karl Marx. I am neither absolutely pro-secession nor absolutely anti-secession--I don't think either position would be rational--but rather consistently pro-monarchy, and inclined to sympathize with just about any anti-progressive Lost Cause.

The Confederate cause also appeals to me because I've never identified with mainstream American patriotism, and the Confederacy is the only movement historically relevant to the soil where I actually live which I can embrace (albeit rather privately) as an alternative.

Also, consider the possibility that the United States might not have been able to inflict as much anti-monarchist damage on the rest of the world (Hawaii, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Italy, etc.) if the country had been permanently divided by either a peaceful Southern secession or a Confederate victory.

Jacobite, did you read the whole Gary Potter article? Solange Hertz is also excellent on this topic in The Star-Spangled Heresy: Americanism.
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Also, consider the possibility that the United States might not have been able to inflict as much anti-monarchist damage on the rest of the world (Hawaii, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Italy, etc.) if the country had been permanently divided by either a peaceful Southern secession or a Confederate victory.
 

 

This is true without a doubt. For one thing, the industrialization that took place in the US after the South lost the War, was the main reason that the USA was able to impose herself so "successfully" if you will on other nations. A nation just 50 years removed from having lost the Southern States would not nearly be as able to do what the US did in WW1, and the industrialization that allowed the USA to do what it did in WWII would not have been as far along if the Southern States had been able to secede. Also, there would have been a crippling blow to the mindset that allowed a country to get itself into what we got into during those times.

 

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The military option adopted by the Lincoln administration was justifiable

 

I'm not sure this position can he held, especially when what lincoln did is not even justifiable by our Constitution.

In 1848, during his efforts to oppose the war with Mexico, Lincoln had attacked President Polk upon the floor of the House for having sent units of the U.S. Army into a disputed border region between Mexico and the United States. Lincoln said that the president’s action violated the Constitution’s requirement that only Congress could declare war. Lincoln’s own action in raising an army by executive order was a far greater violation of these same provisions of the Constitution dealing with the declaration of war than the alleged violations of President Polk, which he had attacked. The “Executive Order Army” could be said to be the precursor of the whole litany of executive orders that have been a favorite device of power-grabbing presidents from the Roosevelt administration onward. The war governors, nevertheless, hastened to provide Lincoln with the militia units and volunteers he needed to commence the hostilities, and the war was on.

See the article below.

 

Quote:
In May 1861 the Civil War was already raging. President Abraham Lincoln called on Maryland to send four regiments to fight for the Union cause. But the state was bitterly divided over the war.

Most Marylanders didn’t want their state to secede, but neither did they favor war. It is widely forgotten that a large body of American opinion held that the Confederate States had every right to secede from the Union and thought they should be allowed to go in
peace. But to Lincoln, this view was “treason.” By Lincoln’s definition, most Americans, not just Southerners, probably qualified as traitors.

The Maryland state legislature replied to Lincoln’s summons for troops with a resolution condemning the war as “unconstitutional and repugnant to civilization,” adding that “for the sake of humanity we are for peace and reconciliation, and solemnly protest against this war, and will take no part in it.” The legislature also called “the present military
occupation of Maryland” a “flagrant violation of the Constitution.”

Lincoln was infuriated. He sent informers to determine which members of the legislature were “disloyal” —i.e., opposed to war. On the night of September 12 he had federal troops arrest dozens of legislators and other prominent citizens (including the mayor of
Baltimore and a Maryland congressman) he suspected of Southern sympathies. Since Lincoln had also suspended the right of habeas corpus, he claimed the power to arrest anyone arbitrarily, without specific charges and without a trial. When the chief justice of the United States, Roger Taney, had ruled that Lincoln had no constitutional power to do this, Lincoln had not only ignored the ruling but ordered Taney’s arrest too! (If he had gone through with this outrage, he might well have been impeached and removed from
office.)

Having depleted the Maryland legislature, Lincoln moved to refill it with reliable Unionists. He stationed thousands of federal troops in the state and used them to crush dissent. As the historian Charles Adams writes in his book When in the Course of Human Events (Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield, 2000): “In November there was an election, and to make sure only Union people were elected, all members of the Federal armed forces voted, even though they were not residents of the state. At the voting booths, other voters had to pass through platoons of Union soldiers who had bayonets affixed to their rifles.” Southern sympathizers attempting to vote were arrested.

By such means Lincoln got the legislature he wanted. “Democratic government ceased in Maryland for the duration of the war,” Adams notes. So much for “government of the people, by the people, for the people,” which, you’ll recall, would “perish from the earth” if the Union lost. Lincoln’s devotion to his avowed principles may be measured by such practices, which showed the cynicism behind his gorgeous rhetoric.

The legend of Lincoln’s humanitarianism and love of freedom will not withstand an examination of his brutal wartime tactics, which shocked civilized Europe. The cruelty of the Union armies as they invaded the South is well known. What is less well known is how the Union terrorized itself.

Across the North Lincoln authorized tens of thousands of arbitrary arrests and shut down hundreds of newspapers for criticizing his war. His military governors sometimes ordered hangings, without trial, for minor offenses. Mere suspicion of disloyalty —very broadly defined — was enough to expose the individual to danger from his own government. It was a genuine reign of terror, an era of government by hysteria. The Constitution was effectively suspended.

Defenders of Lincoln and the Union cause contend that the Constitution doesn’t authorize states to secede. Actually, the Constitution says nothing about secession; it doesn’t authorize it, and it doesn’t forbid it.

But neither does the Constitution authorize its own abrogation for the purpose of resisting secession. It remains binding on the federal government, including the president, at all times, even during war and insurrection.

Lincoln argued in effect that the Constitution could be saved only if he could violate it. It was, and remains, a shabby argument; but it was, and remains, successful propaganda.
Joseph Sobran

 

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BlueEmperor

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Originally Posted by Andrew

Unless its Unconstitutional or illegal of course.

 

Unless it's unconstitutional, yes. Extending the life of a Parliament by refusing to call an election, for example. That would be a breach of the Parliament Act (1911) and the Queen would be well within Her rights to dissolve Parliament and call a General Election.

 

B.E.


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Civil Wars are never pretty. 

 

I would like to point out, that strictly speaking, the War of Northern Aggression was not a Civil War. Civil war implies fighting within one country. By seceeding, the Southern States became another autonomous country. Thus, the war was between two countries.

 

It is also worth noting What Charles Dickens had to say about the war.....

Quote:
Union means so many millions a year lost to the South; secession means the loss of the same millions to the North. The love of money is the root of this, as of many other evils. The quarrel between the North and South is, as it stands, solely a fiscal quarrel.

Karl Marx seconded this view:
Quote:
The war between the North and the South is a tariff war. The war is further, not for any principle, does not touch the question of slavery, and in fact turns on the Northern lust for sovereignty.

 

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In the end, the Union and its Constitution prevailed.  

I am not sure that this can be said. Certain articles, very important articles of the Constitution did NOT prevail. In fact they were violated. In Article IV, Section 4, the Consitution states that

Quote:
The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a republican form of government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on application of the legislature, or of the executive (when the legislature cannot be convened) against domestic violence.

I am not sure that one can consider Sherman's or Sheridan's Armies anything BUT invaders. If you want to make the case that Lincoln did not recognize the CSA and its states' secession, then he did not have ANY right whatsoever to invade those states. By invading those states, he de facto recognized them as a separate country, which in fact they were.

 

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Reply with quote  #29 

 

Unless it's unconstitutional, yes. Extending the life of a Parliament by refusing to call an election, for example. That would be a breach of the Parliament Act (1911) and the Queen would be well within Her rights to dissolve Parliament and call a General Election.

 

B.E.

 

I was also thinking purely illegal. In Australia we've had two cases where a government has been dismissed for acting illegally (well one which was purely illegal, another which was a blur of illegal/unconstitutional factors).

 

The Governor of NSW, Sir Philip Game, dismissed Jack Lang for refusing to pay back loans owed by NSW to Great Britain and removed NSW money from bank accounts to stop the federal Government from accessing the money for repayment, which was in breach of the Financial Agreements Enfocement Act of the Commonwealth Parliament.

 

Then there was 1975.

 

This is what I was also thinking re: acting illegally.

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Washington did not declare war on Western Pennsylvania during the Whiskey Rebellion. He sent in troops, and restored order.

 

War was also not declared against Ruby Ridge and Waco....is what the Federal Government did against those people justifiable in any way? You can not allow exemptions for evil actions. The ends do not justify the means. If an action is wrong, it is wrong. If invading Iraq is wrong, then invading Waco, Ruby Ridge, and the Southern States is wrong as well. Even if they accomplished some good (which I'm not at all convinced any of those actions did) the fact that they accomplished good does not justify the means by which the end was accomplished.

 

Bummer


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