Lincoln

Lincoln’s Thanksgiving

Featured image Lincoln’s famous Thanksgiving Proclamation of October 3, 1863, was drafted by William Seward and signed by Lincoln. The Union’s victories at Gettysburg and Vicksburg lay in the background; the Gettysburg Address was to come the following month. The proclamation pronounced the last Thursday of November “a day of Thanksgiving and Praise.” In it Seward seems to have reached to capture Lincoln’s thought; the proclamation strikes several Lincolnian themes. A copy »

The eternal meaning of Independence Day

Featured image On July 9, 1858, Illinois Senator Stephen Douglas gave a campaign speech to a raucous throng from the balcony of the Tremont Hotel in Chicago. Abraham Lincoln was in the audience as Douglas prepared to speak. Douglas graciously invited Lincoln to join him on the balcony to listen to the speech. In his speech Douglas sounded the themes of the momentous campaign that Lincoln and Douglas waged that summer and »

Don’t Know Much About History, Hillary Edition

Featured image We have commented a number of times about Barack Obama’s below-average knowledge of history. But he is not alone: his would-be successor in the White House, Hillary Clinton, wouldn’t fare well in a high school American history class, either. The Free Beacon covers her book-promoting appearance with Rahm Emanuel. Note that her blunder isn’t a mere slip of the tongue, but rather part of an extended analogy that she draws »

Remembering Mr. Lincoln

Featured image Today is of course the anniversary of the birth of America’s greatest president, Abraham Lincoln. As a politician and as president, Lincoln was a profound student of the Constitution and constitutional history. Perhaps most important, Lincoln was America’s indispensable teacher of the moral ground of political freedom at the exact moment when the country was on the threshold of abandoning what he called its “ancient faith” that all men are »

A genius for friendship

Featured image Abraham Lincoln stands not only as America’s greatest president but also as its greatest lawyer. At the time of his election to the presidency in 1860 he was the most prominent practicing lawyer in the state of Illinois. As a politician and as president, Lincoln was a profound student of the Constitution and constitutional history. Perhaps most important, Lincoln was America’s indispensable teacher of the moral ground of political freedom »

Something Lincoln never said

Featured image Robert Merry begins his interesting National Interest commentary on Obama’s shrinking credibility with a famous quote frequently attributed to Lincoln: Of all of Abraham Lincoln’s profound observations about politics and life, one in particular, uttered on September 2, 1858, in Clinton, Illinois, captures the essence of representative democracy: “You may fool all the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all the time; but »

Gettysburg Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

Featured image Brother Mathis (Joel Mathis of Philly Mag) takes me to task by alleging a willful distortion of President Obama’s invocation of the Declaration of Independence in his second inaugural address in my Forbes column on Obama’s skipping out on the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address today.  He thinks it sly of me that in focusing so heavily on Obama saying the truths of the Declaration “may be self-evident” rather »

Gettysburg in the Power Point Age

Featured image Yup, this is probably how it would go down today.  I’ll bet this is how it appeared on Obama’s Teleprompter today in any case.  (And do we really believe that he left out “under God” today because Ken Burns asked him to?)  This is precisely why I say “Power corrupts, and Power Point corrupts absolutely.”  I never use it in the classroom, except for presenting data in attractive graphical form. »

Obama Skips Gettysburg

Featured image Over in my Forbes.com column for this week (just posted this morning), I muse about the reasons Obama has decided to skip the observances of the 150th anniversary of Lincoln’s Gettysburg address tomorrow, and conclude at the end that we should be grateful that he decided to skip out, despite how appalling a decision it is: Can it be that Obama has sensed a limit to his own megalomania?  While »

Harry Jaffa at 95

Featured image Today is Harry V. Jaffa’s 95th birthday.  Happy birthday, Harry.  Just now we’re in need of the understanding and resolve that went behind that most famous line he ever wrote, in service of Barry Goldwater’s 1964 campaign: “Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice; moderation in the defense of justice is no virtue.” One of his great friends and frequent sparring partners, George Anastaplo, wrote of Jaffa in 1980: »

A word from Abraham Lincoln

Featured image In his Temperance Address of 1842 to the Springfield Washington Temperance Society on the 110th anniversary of George Washington’s birth, Abraham Lincoln had some deep thoughts on the fine art of persuasion: “When the conduct of men is designed to be influenced, persuasion, kind, unassuming persuasion, should ever be adopted. It is an old and a true maxim, that a ‘drop of honey catches more flies than a gallon of »

The eternal meaning of Independence Day

Featured image On July 9, 1858, Illinois Senator Stephen Douglas gave a campaign speech to a raucous throng from the balcony of the Tremont Hotel in Chicago. Abraham Lincoln was in the audience as Douglas prepared to speak. Douglas graciously invited Lincoln to join him on the balcony to listen to the speech. In his speech Douglas sounded the themes of the momentous campaign that Lincoln and Douglas waged that summer and »

Rich Lowry: Lincoln Unbound

Featured image Rich Lowry is the editor of National Review and the author, most recently, of Lincoln Unbound: How an Ambitious Young Railsplitter Saved the American Dream–and How We Can Do It Again, published today. I asked Rich if he would write about the book for Power Line readers on the book’s publication date. Rich has graciously responded as follows: Scott, thanks so much for the invitation to tell your readers a »

Remembering Mr. Lincoln

Featured image Today is of course the anniversary of the birth of America’s greatest president, Abraham Lincoln. As a politician and as president, Lincoln was a profound student of the Constitution and constitutional history. Perhaps most important, Lincoln was America’s indispensable teacher of the moral ground of political freedom at the exact moment when the country was on the threshold of abandoning what he called its “ancient faith” that all men are »

A genius for friendship

Featured image Abraham Lincoln stands not only as America’s greatest president but also as its greatest lawyer. At the time of his election to the presidency in 1860 he was the most prominent practicing lawyer in the state of Illinois. As a politician and as president, Lincoln was a profound student of the Constitution and constitutional history. Perhaps most important, Lincoln was America’s indispensable teacher of the moral ground of political freedom »

A nation of takers

Featured image Nicholas Eberstadt is the author of A Nation of Takers: America’s Entitlement Epidemic. The book, it should be noted, includes dissenting essays by Yuval Levin and William Galston. President Obama seems to have been responding to Eberstadt in a key passage of his second inaugural address: “The commitments we make to each other through Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security, these things do not sap our initiative, they strengthen us. »

Obama’s Living Declaration

Featured image I think it would be a serious mistake to ignore or fail to attend closely to President Obama’s second inaugural address. It speaks to his ambition, his assault on the founding principles, and his attempt to realign the electorate on a misreading or misinterpretation or misrepresentation of the meaning of the founding principles. Attention must be paid. See, e.g., Yuval Levin’s “Obama’s second inaugural.” As R.J. Pestritto has demonstrated, the »