Most worthless US territorial acquisition

pikeshot1600

Ad Honoris
Jul 2009
10,010
I would propose that the founding father would have reluctantly conceded that secession was an inherent right
Lincoln faction upheld the proposition that it wasn't ,

Buchanan was the last president of a confederation of states , Lincoln the first president of a centralized Unitarian one
I am not very sure about the various Founders' views on the reasonableness and legality of secession. Early on the Federal government saw the potential negative effects of states leaving the Union and strong measures were either contemplated or threatened in Connecticut, 1814 (Kotromanic #140 above) and South Carolina in 1832. The latter was more denial of Federal authority than secession, but fast forward to 1860, and S.C. was the first state to secede.

By 1860, the political environment that in the 1780s could conceive of a confederation had changed dramatically. Some may have considered the Constitution a confederation, but others may have had differing political thinking (perhaps one difference of Democrats and Federalists). Whatever the case, by 1860 secession was a cause for open war. Slavery was a justification; it was not the cause.

To Lincoln, and to the North, the future of the United States was as a union, and that was one of the aspects of what seems to me to be the actual American revolution, 1860-65. The Union must be preserved and 618,000 military dead was a price worth paying.

EDIT: (Googled the text of the Constitution.)

The most important statement in regard to the path the US must take was the preamble to the Constitution where "the People" intend "to form a more perfect Union." Therein may be a more definite reply to your post above.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,750
SoCal
Thank you for clarification.

But would James Madison's reaction to the Hartford Convention (1814, I believe) of sending regular army to Hartford be an example of Madison conceding that secession was an inherent right? Your thoughts?
To be fair, though, that was done in wartime.
 

sparky

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
5,397
Sydney
there is some difference between a civil insurrection and a properly constituted and convened legislative body formal vote

I believe the founding fathers decided to not raise the point as it would have been too divisive
they certainly held various opinion on the subject
they did the same on several other points , slavery , commerce and primacy of Federal against states laws
As I see it , it's not because they didn't consider those points important
but because they knew well that to engage in those arguments would fracture their freshly born creation
the constitution was probably seen as a work in progress to be shaped as circumstances would dictate
 
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pikeshot1600

Ad Honoris
Jul 2009
10,010
there is some difference between a civil insurrection and a properly constituted and convened legislative body formal vote

I believe the founding fathers decided to not raise the point as it would have been too divisive
they certainly held various opinion on the subject
they did the same on several other points , slavery , commerce and primacy of Federal against states laws
As I see it , it's not because they didn't consider those points important
but because they knew well that to engage in those arguments would fracture their freshly born creation
the constitution was probably seen as a work in progress to be shaped as circumstances would dictate
The Constitution does not address secession, and that may in fact have been "to not raise the point." A mechanism to address unforeseen circumstances, or those that had yet to be addressed (as in slavery), was included in the process of amendment. A broad compromise such as in 1787-89 rarely resolves all issues, and that was recognized by the Convention, and by influential others not involved.

Mr. Jefferson AFAIK was not involved except maybe through correspondence. The Bill of Rights, often attributed to him alone, was actually an aggregation of concerns which were subject to compromise, and input from numerous Founders (Madison, John Adams, Elbridge Gerry, Roger Sherman and others). An important consideration was the powers of governance, State vs Federal. This was addressed by the Tenth Amendment (the Bill of Rights being the first ten).

The prior Articles of Confederation explicitly stated that all states remained sovereign and independent, even though it referred to a Confederation AND perpetual Union. The Tenth Amendment to the US Constitution restricted the states to powers not delegated to the United States. In regard to a concept of implied powers not expressly addressed, the language limiting the Federal government to "expressly delegated" powers was changed to merely "delegated" to address exigencies that could not be foreseen, or that had not yet been addressed, perhaps because of previous compromise. The concept of implied powers became established in future through the interpretation of the Necessary and Proper Clause.

The ratification of the US Constitution replaced the concept of confederation in the previous Articles. The AoC were established by "Delegates of the States." The Constitution was ordained and established by "the People." The Federal government was established by and for all "the people" rather than by and for the states.

If the People had created a Union, and with implied powers that could be necessary and proper, and secession had not been specifically addressed, there was a legal and constitutional basis for not permitting a state to leave that Union.

After the Civil War, the United States NOT considering secession and making war on the US as treason was an expression that the Confederate States had remained states of the Union throughout 1861-65. The long and bloody war was treated more as an insurrection, and the Union had been seen as indissoluble and perpetual.

(I apologize for the essay, but maybe it is helpful. I had to refresh my bad memory on a lot of this.)
 
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pikeshot1600

Ad Honoris
Jul 2009
10,010
This thread has become more of a constitutional debate than one over a "worthless" US territory, but IMO that is OK. Fewer snarky one-liners. :)
 
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sparky

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
5,397
Sydney
the drift in the thread is tenuously connected with a population right to determinate its national identity

backflipping with grace on the subject , where puerto-Ricain ever consulted on their becoming somewhat American
is Puerto Rico sovereign too , or Hawaii
 
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pikeshot1600

Ad Honoris
Jul 2009
10,010
the drift in the thread is tenuously connected with a population right to determinate its national identity

backflipping with grace on the subject , where puerto-Ricain ever consulted on their becoming somewhat American
is Puerto Rico sovereign too , or Hawaii
Hawaii is a state; P.R. is not, but probably should be. Neither is sovereign. As far as consultation, no. Persons of color in the 1890s were not consulted as to their ideas or preferences. That was a great part of the "White Zeitgeist." Only Canadians and other White people were recognized as civilized, responsible colonials. 'Some people' in the 21st century do not consider Puerto Ricans as real Americans. The fact that they are American citizens means little or nothing to them. They are Americans who primarily speak Spanish. That pisses off 'some people.'
 
Jun 2013
508
Connecticut
Could someone enlighten me about Mississippi? Every time you read a survey or ranking of anything in the USA, Mississippi comes in last or close to last. It's like a third world country in mainland USA.
This is just something I noticed when you read the news and published reports on the status of our states in reference to a myriad bunch of topics: health, illnesses, per capita income, education, and on and on. I don't understand why.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,750
SoCal
Could someone enlighten me about Mississippi? Every time you read a survey or ranking of anything in the USA, Mississippi comes in last or close to last. It's like a third world country in mainland USA.
This is just something I noticed when you read the news and published reports on the status of our states in reference to a myriad bunch of topics: health, illnesses, per capita income, education, and on and on. I don't understand why.
Well, I think that Mississippi has the highest Black % out of all of the US states. If I recall correctly, Blacks tend to be poorer, less educated, and less long-lived than Whites, Hispanics, and Asians are. It's a sad reality, but that's the current situation in regards to this. :(