Saturday, June 27, 2015

Saberpoint on Gene Kizer's, Slavery Was Not the Cause of the War Between the States — the Irrefutable Argument

Man, this book must be really bad.

See Stogie at Saberpoint, "Slavery Was Not the Cause of the War Between the States -- the Irrefutable Argument."

Kizer's book is here.

And here's my response to Stogie:
"The North's economy was based mostly on manufacturing for the South and shipping Southern cotton around the world."

Yes, and cotton was an extremely low-value added commodity, of which the U.S. economy would increasingly marginalize had not the South attempted to export its ideology of property in slaves into the territories, in essence attempting to nationalize the ideology of slaveholder's rights to own blacks.

The fact is, the South had a pre-industrial economy that failed to attract capital, and was already headed for a falling rate of productivity and further economic backwardness. Ironically, what investment that was sent to the South was overwhelming invested in planting, since that's all Southerners really knew how to do -- own black slaves, beat them into vicious submission, to eek out increasingly marginalized returns.

Moreover, insular agrarianism isolated the South, cutting it off from the influx of new people and ideas (people obviously hostile to chattel slavery and much more morally enlightened). Today, the Confederacy, if it had continued to exist, would be a poor primary exporter like the peripheral Latin American economies. Cutting edge industries, back then rail, steel, manufacturing, shipbuilding, and now high-technology information systems, robotics, and nano-technology, would be found nearly exclusively in the North. Folks might as well move to Mexico for all the Southern economy would be cracked up to be.

But again, Stogie, all this stuff you're spouting about the North being the aggressor against the South is more of the mythic national ideology of the South, the same ideology that claimed to favor liberty and states' rights, but in fact pursued tyrannical policies, nationalized economics, used murderous Gestapo-style police force to keep the system in place, and advanced racial ideologies to keep alive a social hierarchy of American apartheid.

Kizer's book is economically illiterate. Yes, the South dominated cotton exports, but economic history shows that "King Cotton" is no longer king. The South was bound to backwardness one way or the other. But by bringing on the Civil War, Southerners guaranteed their experiment from 1961-1865 would wind up on the scrapheap of history, not unlike the Soviet Union (or the Nazis, if you prefer), with which the South's methods of tyranny had so much in common.
As always, check back for future iterations on the discussion of the Confederacy.