Archive for the ‘Lincoln’ tag
Allison delivers an Oscar-worthy performance as Daniel Day Lewis as Abraham Lincoln, plus news of the rare fast food worker strike in NYC, the AP’s anti-Iran propaganda, why eating eggs is gross, Susan Rice is shady, Peter King is crazy, and Senators attempt to punish Palestinians.
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The much-anticipated Steven Spielberg film Lincoln just announced a bunch of added cast members, but what caught my eye is that Tommy Lee Jones will be playing Thaddeus Stevens.
Stevens was a fascinating and highly prescient fellow who was one of the radical Republicans that led Congress during the Civil War. While most of his colleagues were debating if black people should even be considered human, Stevens was defending the rights of women, Chinese, Seventh-day Adventists, Mormons, Jews, and Native Americans.
Eventually, abolition of slavery became his primary political goal and he became actively involved in the Underground Railroad. At one point, his condemnation of the Confederacy was so harsh that the Army of Northern Virginia burnt his iron business to the ground during the Gettysburg Campaign in retaliation.
The dude was even portrayed as a baddie in The Clansman, the second novel in the trilogy upon which the extremely racist “Birth of a Nation” is based.
Super progressive, right? Well, check it. Not only was he a defender of human rights, he wasn’t a huge fan of investing the banks with insane amounts of power:
Stevens made various speeches in Congress in favor of President Lincoln and Henry Carey’s “Greenback” system, interest-free currency in the form of fiat government-issued United States Notes that would effectively threaten the bankers’ profits in being able to issue and control the currency through fractional reserve loans. Stevens warned that a debt-based monetary system controlled by for-profit banks would lead to the eventual bankruptcy of the people, saying “the Government and not the banks should have the benefit from creating the medium of exchange,” yet after Lincoln’s assassination the Radical Republicans lost this battle and a National banking monopoly emerged in the years after.
While thousands of activists plan a protest against Wall Street’s practices here in New York, it’s amusing to see that Thad was well ahead of the curve 150 years ago.