History repeats itself
January 12, 2007 9:05 AM   Subscribe

This post was deleted for the following reason: removed by request.

History often repeats itself. This isn't an example of that.
posted by squirrel at 9:16 AM on January 12, 2007

A book review?


Oh, wait, I get it: you wanted to make a point.
posted by dios at 9:19 AM on January 12, 2007

Hello, Wendell? ...Great, how about you? ...No...No...Of course not!...Well do you think you could?... No... I see... I understand... See you in another thread then... G'bye!
posted by Mister_A at 9:24 AM on January 12, 2007

The first half of the review is pretty good, but the "history repeats itself" angle in the second half was preposterous.

I forgive you for the crap post however because the blog also contained this little gem: Mark Twain, Father of the Internet.
posted by LarryC at 9:28 AM on January 12, 2007

It had all been a wretched waste of money and lives
posted by caddis at 9:30 AM on January 12, 2007

Poor Wendell.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:32 AM on January 12, 2007

I would love for this to be a history repeats itself, but the parallels are tenuous at best.
posted by Doohickie at 9:36 AM on January 12, 2007

I love this line, "The British included some capable people, but not a single Canadian." I get that he's trying to say that the Canadians should have been represented in peace talks over a war that they were in but it still sounds funny.
posted by octothorpe at 9:42 AM on January 12, 2007

There are MeFites with dull axes, ones with sharp axes and ones whose axes have been ground to the very nub.
posted by GuyZero at 9:42 AM on January 12, 2007

Ok in retrospect, bad post. I've sent a message to the admins.
posted by angrybeaver at 9:45 AM on January 12, 2007

In settling the War of 1812, the Americans achieved essentially none of their aims.

they achieved recognition from the british government that american plans for expansion on the continent had a legitimate basis and diplomacy would have to be used to determine the dividing line ... it wasn't all settled for quite some time, but what was established was that it would have to be settled without another war

it may not have seemed like anything, compared to the goals some americans had, but in the long run it was significant

in short, it was a draw, but one that both sides could build constructively on

oh, and resemblances to present history? ... don't make me laugh
posted by pyramid termite at 9:47 AM on January 12, 2007

You know who else repeats himself? My senile uncle. Says the same paranoid shit over and over and over again. Never shuts up about it. Do you think that means something?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 9:47 AM on January 12, 2007

Hitler. Hitler, Hitler, Hitler, HITLER.
posted by Krrrlson at 10:00 AM on January 12, 2007

you're getting more coherent with every day, krrrlson
posted by pyramid termite at 10:05 AM on January 12, 2007

Doesn't the better analogy involve Alcibiades and Sicily? Oh well.
posted by selfnoise at 10:27 AM on January 12, 2007

To say that it was solely American aggression that lead to the war of 1812 is oversimplifying things: Britain had been press-ganging American sailors and seizing American ships on the high seas since 1788 or so to fight Napoleon's armies. The forfeiture had the effect of strangling America economically; without ships and seamen, there would be no way to trade goods with any Continental power. America also claimed that Britain, out of general spite, had been supplying arms to hostile Indians in Canada to raid American settlements. Things spun out of hand, and Clay, perceiving that Britain would continue to use Canada as a means to harass and divide America, pressed for invasion.

Clay was an interesting man. In the terms of the day, he was a Democratic-republican (D-R) when elected to Congress, and as such, believed in continuation of the union. His belief in the continued survival of the union led him (as part of the D-R platform) to engage in a policy of generous compromise with the South on slavery: for example, he helped broker the Missouri compromise. At the same time, he sponsored tariffs that threatened slave holding Southerners' ways of life.

Later, he would found the Whig party, which was started in response to the splintering of the Democratic-republican party into Democrats and Republicans in 1832 (although these parties are far different now than in their birth back ) with the election to president of a slave-trading, warmongering lunatic named Andrew Jackson back in '29. Clay ran as the Whig candidate in the election of 1832, and lost to Jackson.

Time and again Clay worked diligently to keep the U.S. together, brokering deals, soothing wounds and engaging in masterful interparty diplomacy regarding the looming crisis over slavery and state/ territorial rights. Clay's work kept the Whig party together far longer than it might have survived without him, although the party eventually split and dissolved along northern and southern lines over slavery.

Despite the dissolution of his party and discouraged by the election of Jackson and , he still worked to keep the union from fracturing, and it is in large part thanks to him that the Civil War was as long-delayed as it was.

Dying in 1852, nine years before the war, he was recognized as a great statesman by all, and in recognition of his work and love for his country, his tombstone was engraved: "I know no North-no South-no East-no West.".

Painting Henry Clay solely as a Warhawk and alleging he was a 19th century provocateur is insulting. To futher allude that he war on terror is an echo, however faint, of the War of 1812, is exceedingly dismissive of American history does it injury by using it as a crude tool to advance a political view in such an improper fashion.
posted by boo_radley at 10:38 AM on January 12, 2007 [1 favorite]

I was in Washington a few weeks ago. Instead of burning down the White House, I enjoyed a chicken sandwich next door at the historic Willard.
posted by CynicalKnight at 10:39 AM on January 12, 2007

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