The broader point of Digby’s post is fine with me, but when it comes to “anti-Lincoln cranks”, allow me to put forth an alternative view: I think Lincoln was one of the worst presidents for not letting the South secede in the first place. Seriously, why do we venerate the guy? He made clear many times that he only cared about keeping the union together, he had views of blacks that would make Strom Thurmond applaud, he freed the slaves as a tactical manuever, not a moral one, and thanks to that stupid fucking move of keeping the southern states in the union by force, we’re still cursed a century and a half later with recalcitrant, angry, anti-intellectual rednecks who insist on voting their prejudices and bitter resentments. If he had let them go, they would have eventually noticed their northern neighbors enjoying luxuries like basic literacy, shoes and toilet paper and come crawling back begging to rejoin.