A Refutation of Jesse James: Last Rebel of the Civil War by T.J. Stiles

Jesse James: Last Rebel of the Civil War

 

Being a writer, historian and defender of Southern History, more specifically “Reconstruction Era” Southern/Confederate History that is rife with political bias and inaccuracies by writers looking to demonize not only the Confederate cause but also the good, God fearing Southern people (many of them my relatives) caught under the yoke of Federal tyranny during so-called “Reconstruction”, this brief refutation of T.J. Stiles book on Jesse James was a breath of fresh air to be sure.

 

“Stiles offers the most recent interpretation of Jesse as a political terrorist. Stiles continually laments the end of Reconstruction and is on the side of the oppressed blacks.

These days, however, after George Floyd, Black Lives Matter, and a never-ending cycle of black crime and welfare abuse that is harder to defend than it was 30 years ago, Jesse’s stance might have new admirers.

In his ‘History of the American People’, Paul Johnson notes that the Civil War ended the slavery problem and began the Negro problem, which is still with us.

An authoritarian federal government such as the one that arose under Abraham Lincoln and persisted until the end of Reconstruction dismantled it has arisen again, and in the age of Biden it is readily acknowledged to be an immoral, tyrannical threat to the American people. Perhaps not by all of them, but certainly the smell of disenfranchisement is in the air as much as it was in Jesse’s world of 1861 Missouri.

Yet now, a great percentage of the American populace is seen as “Deplorables,” and it is being made clear by the Yankees’ descendants that this is a class which mustn’t be allowed to exist. In the 2020 election, Chris Wallace grilled both candidates about white supremacy. Now, merely being white is crime enough, according to the ruling class. I wonder if more and more people are thinking that if I’m gonna do the time, I might as well do the crime. Jesse appears less as Robin Hood today than as someone fighting to stay alive against a repressive government. As the bumper sticker says, when freedom is outlawed, only outlaws will be free.

Perhaps the final word on Jesse James and his bushwhacker past might be from Ang Lee’s magnificent film Ride With the Devil, which was adapted from Daniel Woodrell’s novel Woe to Live On. Alex Linder’s review of the film questioned whether liberty is consistent with civilized order. Linder felt that the film showed that feral men are the only free men.”

 

 

 

Anti-Communist Book of the Month

One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich

 

While you are here it would not hurt to re-read one of the best articles Revolver has written in the past few years, Are You Ready to be an American Kulak?

 

¿Quien es, Pete?

¿Quien es, Pete?

 

As far as Old West History goes, no other person or story had a more profound impact on me as a writer than Billy the Kid.

When I was fifteen years old, my parents took me on a three-week summer RV trip to New Mexico, Colorado and Utah.

While in New Mexico we spent three days touring Fort Sumner and Lincoln to include the Lincoln County Courthouse and Jail from which Billy broke out of in 1881 (the bullet hole from where he shot Deputy J.W. Bell is still in the wall).

I think the jail scene from Sam Peckinpah’s Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (1973) nails it:

 

 

I have read over half a dozen books about Billy the Kid and his demise at the hands of Pat Garrett, his long time friend and although it is fanciful to entertain the notion that Pat allowed Billy to escape that night (as proffered in the recent western Old Henry) the historical record is clear: Billy the Kid was shot down like a dog in the middle of the night by a man he loved and trusted.

If you have not seen Old Henry yet, check it out and read my review HERE. 

 

Know Your History: John Calhoun, America’s Greatest Political Thinker Since the Founders

America’s Greatest Political Thinker Since the Founders

 

“Four of Calhoun’s ideas are especially relevant today. The first is that patriotism doesn’t spring from high ideals, but from citizens and the state having a mutual stake in each other’s success. Calhoun’s second main argument is that America’s racially discriminatory policies, including slavery, unify white citizens, protect democracy, and mitigate class differences. Calhoun’s third argument opposed admitting non-whites as citizens of the Union and the pursuit of empire. Finally, Calhoun’s most consequential ideal is that of the concurrent majority. This, presented in A Disquisition on Government and in a Discourse on the Constitution and Government of the United Statesis probably the most significant American contribution to serious political science since The Federalist.”

Regardless if you do not lean to the Hard Right or not, I highly recommend the new biography of Calhoun entitled Calhoun: American Heretic. 

As the author states, it is a unintentional glance into national decline, but more importantly, it describes the historical reasons for that decline in exacting detail.

 

Aergeweorc

Aergeweorc

 

‘The period of history which we now call ‘Anglo-Saxon’ lasted from about the mid-fifth century to the end of the eleventh, after the Norman conquest. Most surviving Anglo Saxon manuscripts date from the latter part of that period and the majority of them are in Latin, but England was unique in Early Medieval Europe in having a thriving vernacular literature also – written in a language we all now call ‘Old English’ to distinguish it from the ‘Middle English’ stage of the evolving language, which culminated  in the works of Chaucer and Malory’.

“A language and culture brought to us in the cut and thrust of sword and axe, the cry of the woman in her labour pains and the serf sifting the grain and obeying his thegn in the battle line.”