Revising the War of 1812

Raimondo is out with a column on a favorite, the War of 1812.

Just a couple points to add:

Who knows if they were lying, as politicians do, but the Massachusetts operation was able to produce several folks, including a Congressman, who denied there was much of anything to the Impressment business.  John Quincy Adams, attempting to keep the peace, argued that well, if the subject was murder, then does it really matter how many were actually impressed?

Presidential Material.

-John Henry, not the steel driving bastard, was a British spy who seemed to have had actual connections with New England Federalist elite who were flirting as pro-secessionist and alliance with Britain.  President Madison bought some goods/documents off Henry that alleged there was a Federalist secessionist plot in New England.  The New England Federalists denied such a thing, and Madison’s charge was made to look ridiculous when it was learned the “evidence” was purchased.  Who knows, really, but an early sign of serious entrepreneurial double agent activity.

-In the year of 1812, the only Prime Minister of England to be assassinated occurred in  May of 1812.  While the British Empire, namely its naval power, was being challenged severely, the English populace seemed to dislike the Tory PM, seemed to understand where the assassin was coming from; the Prime Minister was killed by a…wait for it...lone gunmen with…keep waiting…a stint in Russia in the bio.

-Most importantly to recall, the Constitution was largely a Southern power move, but the Southern elite overplayed their hand, and went broke over the War of 1812, ceding power to the Yankee elite around Boston.

The embargo Mr. Jefferson had imposed in his move for autarky, coupled with Mr. Madison’s War, had led Boston elites to go long on factories, and with the post-war bust, the Yankee elite ditched their sea going merchant “free trade” thinking, and embraced “protectionism”.  It’s often forgotten that protectionism began in the South and West at the beginning of the Constitutional Era Republic, only to be adopted by the Yankee elites after the War of 1812.



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5 thoughts on “Revising the War of 1812

  1. Feltan

    Not sure how much has to be revised about it, that is pretty much what I was taught way back when. But I was taught by stern Jesuits who brokered little in the way of love of war — or in my often somewhat less than respectful commentary.

    Of interest is the militia refusing orders. A good argument can be made today that by keeping ground combat power (distinct from air and naval forces) in the National Guard, the country can reap benefit. Not the refusal of orders, but rather a more complex process for actually mobilizing them under Federal authority. In times of emergency, such mobilization can happen quickly, but not so if the State Governors drag their collective feet. Perhaps a layer of protection that could firewall an adventerous Federal Government.


  2. RedPhillips

    The problem with figuring out the War of 1812 is that it depends on who you listen to. Raimondo obviously has a spin. Clyde Wilson defends Calhoun on the issue.

    “His acts and words in regard to war are significant, and, since Calhoun is in many ways a definitive Southerner, will help us understand an aspect of the Southern mind.

    Let us begin with the “War Hawk” of 1811-1816. Calhoun’s first recorded political speech was at a public meeting in Abbeville in 1807 at which he presented and passed resolutions demanding a forceful response to the Chesapeake and Leopard affair.This was not what we are familiar with now— not a peevish demand that the government do something. It was an expression of the willingness of South Carolina to fight for American honour.9 He arrived at the House of Representatives in 1811, and after his first speech, at the age of twenty-nine, the leading Jeffersonian editor of the country called him “one of those master spirits who leave their stamp upon the age in which they live.”10 Calhoun spoke eloquently for firm and effective response to British hostility and insults. He drafted the resolution embodying the declaration of war when it came. His labour in the House to bring support to the army and morale to the country during the discouraging times that followed led an editor to praise him as “the young Hercules who carried the war on his shoulders.”

    Calhoun’s rhetoric as War Hawk is informative. He never appealed to desire for new territory or seldom even for commercial redress, though that was worthy of attention. He spoke often, and almost always he spoke of the war in terms of honour. The young country could not submit to a bully. To do so would be to forfeit respect and invite further affront. Americans must have the spirit and the means to repel dangers so they could go about their real business.11″

  3. C Bowen

    It’s only a problem for Dr. Wilson. I exchanged posts on a Chronicles page a few years back, but for example:

    “In four weeks from the time that a declaration of war is heard on our frontier, the whole of Canada will be in our possession.”

    –John C. Calhoun

    Southerners, like Dr. Wilson, do not want to revise the Revolution, the disloyalty to neighbors–many who went to Canada and stayed Loyal, and tend to be a little weak on the War of 1812, dressing it up about honor as best they can.

  4. Sean Scallon

    The key to understanding the War of 1812 was the Battle of New Orleans. Had it never taken place (because a peace treaty had been signed beforehand, it just didn’t reach the combatants in time) I think U.S. attitudes towards the war in its immediate aftermath would have been a lot different and this U.S. politics would have been different as well. Outside of the South the war was not popular at all but the total victory won by Andrew Jackson captured the nation’s imagination. It basically secured the Mississippi Valley and the whole West for the U.S. It basically made Jackson what he would become, President, the war doomed the Federalist Party to its eventual destruction and established the Scots-Irish as the nation’s frontiersmen, it’s first line of defense.

  5. Pingback: Since We’re on the Subject of War of 1812 Revisionism… | Conservative Heritage Times

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