A Just and Generous Nation: Abraham Lincoln and the Fight by Harold Holzer, Norton Garfinkle

By Harold Holzer, Norton Garfinkle

In A simply and beneficiant Nation, the eminent historian Harold Holzer and the famous economist Norton Garfinkle current a groundbreaking new account of the ideals that encouraged our 16th president to visit warfare whilst the Southern states seceded from the Union. instead of a dedication to removing slavery or a safeguard of the Union, they argue, Lincoln’s guideline was once the security of equivalent fiscal opportunity.

Lincoln firmly believed that the government’s basic function was once to make sure that all americans had the chance to raised their station in lifestyles. As president, he labored tirelessly to enshrine this excellent in the federal executive. He funded railroads and canals, supported schooling, and, most significantly, issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which opened the door for former slaves to hitch white american citizens in striving for self-improvement. In our personal age of exceptional inequality, A simply and beneficiant Nation reestablishes Lincoln’s legacy because the protector not only of non-public freedom yet of the yank dream itself.

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Extra info for A Just and Generous Nation: Abraham Lincoln and the Fight for American Opportunity

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Why bother to worry about the Constitution if the courts will bail us out anyway? And, after all, as Justice Gibson observed, the courts are not infallible, either. They can be caught up in the passions of the moment, too—and they have been, as we’ll see in Chapter 9. Even more, and again as Justice Gibson observed, the Constitution’s meaning is rarely transparent. What one person thinks is an obvious constitutional violation, an- 13 14 i dissent other thinks is a reasonable exercise of national power.

These corporations, unless there be an exemption in their charter, are, like private bankers and banking companies, subject to State taxation. The manner in which these taxes shall be laid depends wholly on legislative discretion. It may be upon the bank, upon the stock, upon the profits, or in any other mode which the sovereign power shall will. Upon the formation of the Constitution the States guarded their taxing power with peculiar jealousy. They surrendered it only as it regards imports and exports.

It may be said, the people would probably not notice an error of their representatives. But they would as probably do so, as notice an error of the judiciary; and, beside, it is a postulate in the theory of our government, and the very basis of the superstructure, that the people are wise, virtuous, and competent to manage their own affairs. . + + + If Justice Gibson’s approach to constitutional review had prevailed in 1803, John Marshall could not have struck down the statute giving the Supreme Court the power to issue the writ Marbury sought.

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