November 15, 2012

"Back there America was put on the cross, died and was resurrected."

"The godawful truth of that would be the all-encompassing template behind everything that I would write."

Bob Dylan, quoted at Lancaster.com by staff writer Jack Brubaker, on the occasion of the Spielberg movie about Lincoln, in which Tommy Lee Jones plays Thaddeus Stevens, who was "one of Lancaster's most famous sons." The Dylan quote was in Bob's 2004 memoir "Chronicles, Volume One" — hey, where's Volume 2? — in which he writes about the effect of reading a biography of Thaddeus Stevens.

10 comments:

McTriumph said...

Abolition couldn't happen today, the IRS would come down hard on any white church speaking politics from the pulpit.

EDH said...

Bob Dylan, "voice of the nuvo rich"?

He found that the abolitionist "grew up poor, made a fortune and from then on championed the weak and any other group who wasn't able to fight equally. Stevens had a grim sense of humor, a sharp tongue and a white-hot hatred for the bloated aristocrats of his day."

Surfed said...

There's always some Bob lyric (obscure or not) to quote that can just about cover every situation from the pesonal to the political. Songs too. We used to make a game of it back in the day but now I'm basically alone and no one knows what the hell I'm talking about when I break one out. When I explain it I get either a blank stare or, if they're young, a "you're such a geezer" look. Half of my attraction to Althouse blog (other than shared political sentiments and incisive skewering) is that she plays the old game of Bob quotes with me even if it is from afar. That and she's dead ringer for an old flame.

edutcher said...

Thaddeus Stevens wanted to execute every member of the confederate government and armed forces.

If he was one of Abe's sons, it must have been like having shilol related to you.

ricpic said...

Are we all supposed to suddenly talk about Lincoln lest Spielberg's exercise in lugubrious pomposity flops at the box office?

LarsPorsena said...

Blogger ricpic said...

Are we all supposed to suddenly talk about Lincoln lest Spielberg's exercise in lugubrious pomposity flops at the box office?
--------------------------------

Yes.

traditionalguy said...

Stevens was an amazing prophet of righteousness in a political mess of deception and compromise. No one needed doubt where Thaddeus stood.

Stevens career arose in a Scots Irish area that was newly freed from Kings of Europe and elected its own representatives to go to DC and fight the aristocracy hold overs from the Tiewater.

Andrew Jackson likewise fought the monopoly of the US Bank, as Stevens fought the Banks monopoly on currency creation power.

Both of them fought the Slave Aristocracy. Jackson said his regret was not hanging John C Calhoun when he could have for treason on his Interposition claims.

Later Stevens wanted to hang members of the same Slave Aristocracy class for starting the war that killed 600 thousand men.

Dylan being a prophet as a youth and was drawn to Stevens for his outspoken boldness.

Before he died in 1867, our Constitution had been personally redrawn by the prophet Stevens to meet the needs as he saw them. The secessionists of today had better study that history.

wildswan said...

In 1837 Elijah Lovejoy, an abolitionist newspaper editor, was murdered by a mob in Alton Illinois. In 1856 abolitionist Senator Charles Sumner was beaten bloody on the floor of the Senate by a proslavery Senator who continued to serve in the Senate. In short the abolitionists were not liked and their cause was not popular. But it was just and it prevailed. As I see it prolifers are the abolitionists of today, raising an unpopular cry for justice on behalf of a defenceless, exploited group. We are like the abolitionists of the 1830's. And those who talk about silencing prolifers within the Republican party or about disregarding them while somehow keeping their votes have forgotten that that exact strategy was the Whig strategy with respect to abolitionists - a strategy which resulted in the demise of the Whigs and the founding of the Republican party. There's every reason to stay within a larger party and work step by step for one's goals and there's no reason to stay within a party whose strategy is to suffocate those goals.
There's a lot of talk about demographics - here's some demographic facts that suggest that "values voters", prolifers and other outcasts should be considered.
In this generation 75% of all women had two or fewer children (including 20% who had no children) so this generation voted resoundingly for abortion and birth control. But more than 50% of the next generation is coming from the 25% of women that had three or more children.
The African-American birth rate fell below replacement level in 2006. That means that this group is being wiped out. And the Obama policies that call for more and cheaper birth control and abortion will accelerate the decline. The only solution is restoration of the values that hold families together - values that will be held by a majority of the next generation (see above).
In light of these demographic facts, is it really smart to try to drive from the Republican party those who have lived out how to keep a family together? to insult those women who are more than lady parts to their men and children?

cokaygne said...

Interesting comment, wildswan. I don't know, will someone tell me, is Stevens comparable to the senate candidates in MO and IN who brought down the GOP? They did not just lose their races, which should have been easy wins, they also gave ammunition to the "war on women" crowd.

The abolitionists focused, I think, on the slave and the utter inhumanity of the sytem that enslaved him and his family forever. Some pro-lifers, like Akin amd Murdock, come across as hating any woman. They seem more interested in saying that "she asked for it" and therefore should be punished.

cokaygne said...

Interesting comment, wildswan. I don't know, will someone tell me, is Stevens comparable to the senate candidates in MO and IN who brought down the GOP? They did not just lose their races, which should have been easy wins, they also gave ammunition to the "war on women" crowd.

The abolitionists focused, I think, on the slave and the utter inhumanity of the sytem that enslaved him and his family forever. Some pro-lifers, like Akin amd Murdock, come across as hating any woman. They seem more interested in saying that "she asked for it" and therefore should be punished.