By wmw_admin on August 21, 2017
"Treason is defined by Article 3, Section 3 of the U.S. Constitution as follows: “Treason against the United States shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.” The most important word here is “them.” As in all the founding documents, “United States” is always in the plural, signifying that the “free and independent states,” as they are called in the Declaration of Independence, are united in forming a compact or confederacy with other states. Levying war against “them” means levying war against individual states, not something called “the United States government.” Therefore, Lincoln’s invasion and levying of war upon the Southern states is the very definition of treason in the Constitution.
Lincoln took it upon himself to arbitrarily redefine treason, not by amending the Constitution, but by using brute military force. His new definition was any criticism of himself, his administration, and his policies. He illegally suspended the writ of Habeas Corpus (illegal according to this own attorney general, Robert Bates) and had the military arrest and imprison without due process tens of thousands of Northern-state citizens, including newspaper editors, the Maryland legislature, the mayor of Baltimore, the grandson of Francis Scott Key who was a Baltimore newspaper editor, Congressman Clement L. Vallandigham of Ohio, his chief critic in the U.S. Congress, and essentially anyone overheard criticizing the government. (See Freedom Under Lincoln by Dean Sprague and Constitutional Problems Under Lincoln by James Randall).
The major opposition to Lincoln’s agenda of a mercantilist empire modeled after the British empire had always been from the South, as Presidents Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Jackson, and Tyler, among others, vetoed or obstructed Whig and later, Republican, legislation. There were Southern supporters of this agenda, and Northern, Jeffersonian opponents of it, but it is nevertheless true that the overwhelming opposition to this Northern, Hamiltonian scheme came from the Jeffersonian South.
Henry Clay was the leader of the Whigs until his death in 1852, and Lincoln once claimed that he got all of his political ideas from Clay, who he eulogized as “the beau ideal of a statesman.” In reality, the Hamilton/Clay/Lincoln “American System” was best described by Edgar Lee Masters, who was Clarence Darrow’s law partner and a renowned playwright (author of The Spoon River Anthology). In his book, Lincoln the Man (p. 27), Masters wrote that:
“Henry clay was the champion of that political system which doles favors to the strong in order to win and to keep their adherence to the government. His system offered shelter to devious schemes and corrupt enterprises . . . He was the beloved son of Alexander Hamilton with his corrupt funding schemes, his superstitions concerning the advantage of a public debt, and a people taxed to make profits for enterprises that cannot stand alone. His example and his doctrines led to the creation of a party that had not platform to announce because its principles were plunder and nothing else.”