The Gettysburg Address and Lovely Lies

Yesterday was the 150th memorial of the Gettysburg Address. Aglow with Lincoln hagiography and pride at our cultural progress, many modern Americans don’t understand the real significance of the Gettysburg Address for its time. So I thought it would be a good opportunity to open this can of worms.

Opting not to give a speech at the 150th anniversary commemoration, Obama instead hand-wrote a note of appreciation for the landmark political speech. One cannot help but think that Obama had himself in mind when he described Lincoln’s mid-war emotional state and personal burden:

I linger on these few words that have helped define our American experiment: “a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”

Through the lines of weariness etched in his face, we know Lincoln grasped, perhaps more than anyone [“aside from me, of course”], the burdens required to give those words meaning. He knew that even a self-evident truth was not self executing . . .

I’m sure Obama believes that he himself is engaged in a similar battle. And perhaps he is. Because Lincoln’s battle was not actually one of right, it was one of might. That Lincoln eventually got his way in the conflict ended in the ruin of a good idea and the establishment of a bad one. Listen to the wise words of famous curmudgeon H. L. Mencken concerning the Gettysburg Address:

The Gettysburg speech is at once the shortest and the most famous oration in American history. . . . It is eloquence brought to a pellucid and almost child-like perfection—the highest emotion reduced to one graceful and irresistible gesture. Nothing else precisely like it is to be found in the whole range of oratory. Lincoln himself never even remotely approached it. It is genuinely stupendous.

But let us not forget that it is oratory, not logic; beauty, not sense. Think of the argument in it! Put it into the cold words of everyday! The doctrine is simply this: that the Union soldiers who died at Gettysburg sacrificed their lives to the cause of self-determination — “that government of the people, by the people, for the people,” should not perish from the earth. It is difficult to imagine anything more untrue. The Union soldiers in that battle actually fought against self-determination; it was the Confederates who fought for the right of their people to govern themselves. What was the practical effect of the battle of Gettysburg? What else than the destruction of the old sovereignty of the States, i. e., of the people of the States? The Confederates went into battle an absolutely free people; they came out with their freedom subject to the supervision and vote of the rest of the country—and for nearly twenty years that vote was so effective that they enjoyed scarcely any freedom at all. Am I the first American to note the fundamental nonsensicality of the Gettysburg address? If so, I plead my aesthetic joy in it in amelioration of the sacrilege.

So, the Gettysburg Address is a beautiful lie. The cult of Lincoln, like the cult of Obama, wants desperately to believe something that just isn’t true. Beautiful words, like sugar for medicine, help the lies go down, and stay down. I truly appreciate the Gettysburg Address and the Emancipation Proclamation (which, contrary to the test for American citizenship, didn’t free a single slave) as brilliant pieces of political maneuvering. But I am tired of hearing about Lincoln’s love for freedom, black people, or the Union. Lincoln, in effect, despised all three. His tyrannical disregard for executive restraint is famous, his racism is infamous, his love for the Union dubious. So perhaps Obama is right to align himself so squarely with Lincoln, since he’s also a racist tyrant dedicated to the destruction of our country.

The legacy of the Gettysburg Address is one where beauty and rhetoric trumps logic and sense. It is one where a hand-written note sopping with postured sincerity will stand in for real transparency and effective leadership. I applaud it for its political prowess, but must denounce it for its lies. I’m deeply, profoundly sorry if that offends you. If you want, I can even write you a hand-written note of apology.

76 responses

  1. What’s funny is listing to all the morons here that believe today’s GOP (which is the conserative party of the south) has anything in common with the liberal party of the north (which was the GOP of Lincoln) other then name. I found this article deeply offensive but indicative of the thought process of Neo Confederates that are still fighting the civil war

        • How convenient that there is a copy that leaves out “under God”. And, why couldn’t Burns arrange for Obama to read that copy for his film, when it was convenient for him? When he could ask for do overs, if necessary, because usually the first take isn’t good enough? If this was the first time Obama had done something like this, it could be easily explained away, but, this is just one more exxample of how Obama ignores, neglects, or snubs Christianity, while doing just the opposite, when it comes to Islam.

          • Ken Burns is wildly progressive in his views. Much of his telling of history is politically slanted to the left. He probably went out of his way to use the version that omits “under God.”

          • The northern liberals had to march down south to teach the Christian conservatives a lesson that one would think they would NEVER forget! Yet, listening to many of them it seems they have & we might just have to do it all over again. The next time the south won’t get off so “easy”.

          • HAHA!!!! You hillbillies are ALL bark & NO bite!!!! If push came to shove the blue states would go through the red states like a hot knife through butter!!!! It would make Sherman’s march through the south seem like a picnic to you rebels!

          • I’m Texas born and Missouri bred and trained. Missouri was not all anti-slavery during the war. But I am strongly anti-slavery and anti-Islam. Our next war is apt to be with Islam and we anti-slavery folks will be fighting against ones who want to enslave us to their Allah. It will be no picnic, I promise.

          • Mr. Bob, you are playing right into the hands of the several NWO groups and the Muslims—who are setting on the sidelines, ‘egging you all on”, so they can move in and take over this great country. If we stay united there is but one or two countries that would even consider doing what the NWO /Muslims are contemplating—or are you a NWO or Muslim “plant”?

          • Sorry, I don’t buy into “conspiracy theories” about the NWO & I have little concern that Muslims that make up 2% of our population are somehow going to rise up & take over this country. Nor, do I believe in this treasonous talk of neo-confederates about succession is anything more that hot air coming from Christian fascists that when push comes to shove are nothing more than cowards.

          • “Bob”, you are woefully uninformed as to the Muslim problem, or you are “one of them”. Most any devout American Muslim will look you straight in the eye and tell you they are going to take over this country and then the rest of the world—and they have made significant strides in doing just that. At the present, the Muslims either occupy or influence about half of the land mass on this continent, and most all of that was accomplished by barbaric brute force, including the removal of heads. That history is well documented in many books and on the internet—-and pray tell, just what do you think is happening in our present administration?—-it is not “TICK TACK TOE”! In fact, the evidence is so clear to those who are informed, that you must be either ignorant (not knowing the facts) or you are a Muslim or socialist plant–(I hope it is the former, in that it can be corrected). I sincerely believe that the Muslim/Islamic issue is the gravest problem facing this great country since our civil war. The Muslims have already made significant inroads into both our government (at all levels) and our schools. And the answer(s) do not lay in just reading their Holy Book, the Qur’an, as that document is incomprehensible, even for the more learned Muslims. Their Qur’an is completely lacking in chronology and is further made unreadable by the random insertion of “abrogations”, which are also undated.

          • I can assure you I’m no Muslim. The biggest problem this world faces is religion. Although it’s all one big fairytale the irony is that it’s a self fulfilling prophecy & the end of the world will come because we will blow it up over who’s fairytales we believe to be true!!!

          • I’m a Christian. I note that unbelievers who seek light from reading the Bible do well to be confused if they start at the front of the book in their reading. I urge all to read the Bible. But the right place to start is in the NEW Testament scriptures which tell of the coming of the Christ to earth. In particular one who knows little about the Bible would do best to begin reading the gospel according to John, the fourth book in the New Testament. John introduces us to Jesus of Nazareth who is Savior of all who will turn to Him and seek to serve Him as Lord. Jesus is and was a good person. Before He came to earth He lived in Heaven and was the actual creator of this universe. He loves us and seeks our good in all ways. Studying the Old Testament is good for mature Christians to do, but it teaches little about the Lord Jesus. There are 66 books in the Bible, some very small books. Each is different, written by different authors and for different audiences. Which explains why I’m suggesting Bible study should not start in Genesis, the first book of the Old Testament.

            I’ve put a short study at my web site anyone is welcome to read. It’s title is “Helpful Hints for Understanding the Bible.” It’s at There are some things in the Bible that are deep indeed, hard to understand. What I’m recommending is that anyone who wants to know God and Jesus should read first the easy parts. The entire Old Testament was finished more than 400 years before Jesus was born on earth. Of course it can’t tell about Him, and knowing Him is key to salvation.

          • If anyone has doubts about Muslim intentions, that person should take a close look at Dearborn, Michigan and at the Minneapolis-St.Paul airport where all taxi-drivers now are Muslims. And in every community, Muslims are quiet and seem good citizens as long as they are a small minority in the community. But Obama is a Muslim and has placed Muslims in many offices in this federal government. It’s not clear how soon he will attempt a takeover of the entire nation for Islam. That he hopes to do so while in office can’t be doubted.

          • Is Obama the only Muslim that proclaims to be a Christian, goes to a Christian church, smokes, drinks & eats pork on the planet?

          • Don’t you get bored with this Boob? You must have files full of this shit since you post the same verbatim comments over and over, spelling errors and all. I can read your stuff from last month, last year, or wait till next year and it will never change. Different topics, same nonsense.

          • DEMONCRATS still have the blacks as slaves, they only want them around during election time and throw them some scraps like a stupid obama phone and some more food stamps.

          • It’s thrilling to have BEN CARSON alive and sentient to put the lie to such claims. And Ben is by no means the only black-skinned patriot in the U.S.A. We admire him, and rightly so. I know many others with black skins who are just patriots like my white-skinned brothers. This is a land where anyone of any race can survive and flourish if the will to do so is present. That many blacks are worthless trash is by their own choice. Most of us non-blacks know many blacks who are outstanding honest people. Most of us know some whites who are just as mean and ignorant as some blacks we know. We therefore try to be as color-blind as God is and look at the hearts of others rather than their skins. So our friends may be of many races.

          • “DOOM161”, come-on, when millions of opposing people are involved in any issue, it takes time to resolve all problems—also, just what is or was your point ?

        • Sir, it is well time to “bury the hatchet”—we must get back to the motto, “United We Stand, Divided We Fall”. There are several NWO groups and the Muslims “out there” hoping for further breakup of our stand, so they can “move in a take over”.

      • Actually not true. Obama simply and deliberately selected the original draft version
        of the Gettysburg Address which was dedicated to one of his secretaries named Nicolay…..
        thus the “Nicolay Copy”, which indeed does not include the words “under God”.
        Those two words were inserted in other drafts of the speech, which Lincoln ultimately delivered.
        We suspect that Obama or someone on his staff knew exactly what they were doing
        in their exclusion of reading one of the final drafts, so as to leave out “under God”.
        We need a new president of the United States……………….soon.

        • Sir, and just where did you get this “insight” as to what both Presidents were thinking?—and your use of indefinite pronouns and just the word “president”, leaves doubt as to whom you are referring.

        • The nation is lost unless we have a new President soon. Very soon! Obama omits mention of God because he believes in Allah and is afraid to offend Allah by mention of the living God. Since Allah is long dead, it’s followers of Allah such as Obama who should fear the living God and recognize that their ignoring Him will not make Him go away. The great judgment day is coming. It may be soon. THEN all will bow before God and adore HIM.

    • What’s funny is that you are still allowed to post your dog poop on this site!!!

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    • @Mr Bob – you have exactly ZERO evidence to substantiate your claims about the GOP of the south and liberals of the north. SO it amounts to either lies or your opinion. Neither are of any use. There was no “conservative party of the south.” They were DEMOCRATS and nothing has changed today. Slavery of chains or slavery to the “state.” Both are hallmarks of the Democratic party. Read a little Frederick Douglass if you have any real interest in learning about history.

    • Obama’s goals and intentions are vastly different from those of our better past leaders. If Obama continues in office, this nation will be lost. That’s his obvious aim.

  2. It Takes Insufferable Deceptive Morons Like The Brain Dead Bastard Who Wrote This Pile Of Steaming Swine Dung And The Lying Tyrant Obama To Try To Rewrite History And At The Same Time Expose Themselves As The Useless Ass Wipes That They Truly Are.

  3. Judging from the past 150 years, it is practically irrelevant. Public policy is not a guarantor of individual behavior, rather the criteria by which it is judged to be acceptable or unacceptable, right or wrong, legal or illegal and public policy may or may not be either based on morality and ethics.derived from religion or culture.

    • The military has a right to hate a piece of dung that calls them just bumps in the road, and uses them to hold a umbrella over his nappy head.

    • Since today’s southern Christians like to claim Lincoln as one of their own & take credit for freeing the slaves, supporting civil rights, etc, etc. do you think in another 150 years they will come to LOVE Obama much as they have Lincoln (both of which they once considered the devil)?

  4. The Confederacy went to battle an absolutely “free” people? Not all of them, I guess Minkoff discounted the slaves. I guess he does not consider them people.

    • Jaydee, you misquoted Minkoff. He did not say “the Confederacy went to battle” but rather “the confederates went to battle”. Slavery could have and probably would have solved itself without a war. It did in England.

      • It’s wishful thinking to suppose slavery would have been recognized by all citizens as a bad thing without the battles waged because of slavery and it’s imposition by “states’ rights.” We very nearly ended up as two separate nations, and Lincoln did well to lead us to remaining one free land. We did well to honor him and George Washington with holidays for many years. Now times have changed and once again we may face a divided nation, for many of us are unwilling to remain in a U.S.A. ruled by Obama or anyone like him. If bad guys can win elections, there comes a time when good guys fell we must opt out of the results of the fraud and its results.

  5. “Armchair quarterbacking” at its finest! The author was not there, seeing and inhaling the odor of the many still unburied soldiers Also, the President was not speaking just about the Union soldiers, but for both sides and “mankind” in general. I, while in “Nam”, observed dozens of young GIs, of many “races” hanging on “meat hooks”, in a morgue that was not air-conditioned. You can rest assured such deaths surely gave insight to the President as to the issues of what is “right and wrong”. I sense a continuation of the “The South will rise again” philosophy. For any state now to even consider secession would be utter stupidity. For every single reason to do so is overshadowed by dozens of reason for us to stay united. The principle reason is there would be for years, utter chaos (and wars?) with monetary and property issues, who would control and maintain the internet, highway systems, power, and pipeline grids and how would we handle the mass migration of citizens going to and from the states involved? Also, what would happen to the federal and state “benefits” now in existence, including pensions, health benefits and food stamps?—Also, any state seceding would have to hope that their neighbors were “friendly”, else they could be “landlocked” as to travel and commerce. People, look at the bigger picture (or the lessor of evils).

    • There surely will be severe problems if worst comes to worst. But those problems will need to be solved if we lose the liberties which have marked this FREE nation. Patriots will be forced to join the seceding states regardless of what it costs us. Far better if we don’t have to secede, of course. But Obama makes it more and more likely that secession will be essential for all who love liberty.

      • We all will lose our liberties if any state(s) secede from the union as that will open Pandora’s Box for all of the NWO and Muslim groups to “do their thing”—-and just who do you think will come to your rescue? And, for those seceding states that are “landlocked”, just who are you going to rely upon for your; oil, California strawberries, Colorado Beef, Kansas wheat, Nebraska corn, Florida oranges and seafood?—-think people, think and look at the much bigger picture. For all who even suggest secession, as a cure, reread my other post above and respond to each of the critical points. For those who want to continue the “South will rise again”, philosophy, you are attempting to relive along- lost issue. As I have stated before, the logic is so clear that many of you people are either extremely ignorant or you are a NWO or Muslim “plant” and by being ignorant (not knowing history and the facts), you unwittingly become one of the “bad guys”. Those who honestly believe secession is the solution, surely must have answers to my queries in this and the post above. If you don’t respond, that will reinforce my belief that you are “plants”— and I see no “middle ground”, .Remember, “United We Stand and Divided We Fall”. And if that does not “ring your bell”, how about, “…Because without America, there is no Free world” A small seceded state would not last a year on its own out in the real world today—-just look at what is happening in Egypt Syria and many African countries right know.

        • I feel free to state what is true. If Don doesn’t agree, that’s his privilege. That doesn’t make him right. Nor will we need to answer to HIM! We will do what we feel is God’s will regardless of what Don thinks or says.

          • Come on Ray, neither you nor I are “authorities” on what is “true”, We have our opinions and we try and back them up with what we believe are valid points. To be more accurate, add the words, ” I believe” to your first sentence. Also, I note you and most others who disagree with me, refuse to respond to my various “points”, and merely say I am wrong; That approach does not give any of you “blue ribbons” in the debate. I do appreciate your civil responses, however.

  6. Mac boy, unlike the Confederates of the civil war. The new Confederates are on the dole. All the blue states would have to do to get them to fall back in line is quit subsidizing them & they would starve to death! That would save us the minor inconvenience of marching down south and whipping there ass again

  7. The Gettysburg Address is about two things: American Gov’t & the honor of our veterans. While Lincoln’s actions were unconstitutional, slavery represented one ultimate extreme in anti-American values. The southern leadership were fools not to end it peaceably in the 1850s. Freed slaves would have stayed at their posts, by and large. Alas, the War Between the States decended upon us at Lincoln’s hand. We should not debate this today.

    As regards the veterans, this is where we should focus. So many have given their lives for the freedoms that we have here-to-fore enjoyed. Our nation has foreign enemies clearly. However, we urgently need to decide how to respond when we see enemies within our borders eating up what so many of our heroic veterans have given their lives to preserve. Let us set our minds upon Constitutional strategies that wisely support liberty. The best example I can think of today is the articles of impeachment of Eric Holder that have now been entered in the House.

      • Bob – if you’re prepared to make worthwhile comments, please do. Your record below doesn’t indicate that .

        • Lincoln, in fact, never really had any meaningful authority over the Southern states. About half of them seceded from the Union before Lincoln took office and none of them were re-admitted until long after Lincoln’s assassination. So, in many of the most hard-core Republican states today, such as South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and Texas, in a very real sense, Abraham Lincoln, the original Republican was never technically their president.

          • Bob, while this is an interesting historic fact I did not know, I am insisting that our real issue is current strategies to honor the sacrifice of America’s war dead and protect freedom.

          • And are you sure this “interesting historical fact you did not know” is in fact true? I think it’s a clever manipulation of truth rather than historical FACT.

          • Seven states seceded before Lincoln was inaugurated on March 4, 1861. They were South Carolina, Mississippi, Alabama, Texas, Florida, Louisiana, and Georgia. Dimwit!

    • For anyone to try to blame the Civil War on Abraham Lincoln is absurd. He did not cause that war. He worked to preserve the nation. He succeeded, with God’s help. Bob wonders who we think was on God’s side in that conflict. God wants every man to be free. He opposes tyranny and slavery.

  8. “The Union soldiers in that battle actually fought against self-determination; it was the Confederates who fought for the right of their people to govern themselves. ” Stated above is REVISIONIST HISTORY!

    Other sources make the same false claim, but four notable categories of Confederate records disprove these claims and indisputably show that the South’s desire to preserve slavery was indisputably the driving reason for the formation of the Confederacy.

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