One tragedy of war is that its victors write its history and often do so with bias and dishonesty. That's true about our War of 1861, erroneously called a civil war. Civil wars, by the way, are when two or more parties attempt to take over the central government. Jefferson Davis no more wanted to take over Washington, D.C. than George Washington, in 1776, wanted to take over London. Both wars were wars of independence.
Despite the steadiness of the stream, the fertile field of “Founders Literature” never seems to reach a saturation point. Recently, a flood of books has flowed from familiar fountains: Joseph Ellis (First Family), Bruce Chadwick (Triumvirate), Pauline Maier (Ratification), and Ron Chernow (Washington: A Life). Thousands of pages on the lives and times of the men and women whose names are at the top of the dramatis personae of the founding drama.
Old war hawks never die, they just beat new war drums. Columnist David Broder, New Dealer emeritus at the Washington Post, believes he has discovered the elixir for our stubbornly stagnant economy, one that has the potential to make Barack Obama "one of the most successful presidents in history." And, oh yes, it will be good for the country, too. Heck, it worked for FDR, didn't it?
Most elections are about particular policies, particular scandals or particular personalities. But these issues don't mean as much this year — not because they are not important, but because this election is a crossroads election, one that can decide what path this country will take for many years to come.