by Al Benson Jr.
Member, Board of Directors, Confederate Society of America
Back in July of 2019 Gillian Brockell did an article for The Washington Post which dealt with Abraham Lincoln and his socialist leanings.
She made a point of telling her readers that "Of course, Lincoln was not a socialist, nor communist, nor Marxist, just as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer aren't. But Lincoln and Marx--born only nine years apart--were contemporaries. They had many mutual friends, read each other's work and, in 1865, exchanged letters. When Lincoln served his sole term in Congress in the late 1840s, the young lawyer from Illinois became close friends with Horace Greeley, a fellow Whig who served briefly alongside him. Greeley was better known as the founder of the New York Tribune..."
Horace Greeley was also, as Donnie Kennedy and I wrote in our book Lincoln's Marxists, a utopian socialist. But then, a lot of Lincoln's friends were socialists, or communists.
Brockell duly noted that Karl Marx was "intensely interested" in the plight of American slaves. Sure he was! The man who advocated the biggest system of slavery the world has ever known was concerned with the plight of American slaves! Give your readers a break, lady! Most of them except for the "useful idiots" trained to be Marxists know better.
Brockell observed that, like many Republicans, Lincoln was a steady reader of the Tribune and if you think he didn't read the material Marx wrote for the Tribune, nearly 500 articles, then you just ain't paying attention.
It was noted by Brockell that there were two factors that helped Lincoln in his presidential quest--"First, the support of former German revolutionaries who had become key players in the Republican Party; and second, the support of the party's newspaper, the Tribune. Look at what she is telling us here. Two of the main aids to Lincoln becoming president were the help of the Forty-Eighter socialists and communists who had basically infiltrated the new Republican Party and the help of a newspaper run by a utopian socialist. Sounds like most of Lincoln's help came from the political left. You don't suppose the reason for that was that the leftists of that day already knew where Lincoln was coming rom, do you? You have to wonder if Lincoln's comments about labor being prior to and independent of capitol had anything to do with this.
We were also told by Brockell that "Marx was friends with Charles A. Dana, an American socialist fluent in German who was managing editor of the New York Tribune. He was the one who hired Marx to write for the Tribune. And Brockell has told us that, once Lincoln took office, "his alliance with socialists didn't stop. Dana left the Tribune to become Lincoln's eyes and ears in the War Department..." Dana informed Lincoln, among other things, about what he thought of his generals.
Our book Lincoln's Marxists noted, on page 50, that Dana served under Edwin M. Stanton as assistant secretary of war in the Lincoln administration. That was a pretty lofty national position to be held by a socialist in the 1860s. So much for those folks that try to tell us we never had a problem with socialism or communism in this country until the 1930s. Such folks are either naive or they hope the rest of us are.
Arthur R. Thompson, in his informative work To The Victors Go The Myths And Monuments noted of Dana, on page 198 that: "Charles Dana was a vice president of the National Convention of Associations. He was a member of the Prodhonian Club, nicknamed the 48ers of America, composed mainly of Americans who participated in the revolution of 1848-1849 in Europe. In 1848 he spent eight months covering the revolutions for the New York Tribune, and he shared Marx's views. Dana wrote that the purpose of the uprisings was 'not simply to change the form of governments, but to change the form of society.' He did more than report. Dana is but one example of reporters who participated in revolutionary activities and then posed as impartial observers as 'reporters.' This has long been a tactic of the Left, and continues to this day."
Brockell reiterated once more that "Lincoln never took up the mantle of socialism" as if to tell us that we should now ignore all she has told us about Mr. Lincoln and he leftist coterie in Washington. Mr. Lincoln did not have to "take up the mantle. His actions spoke louder than his words. I have long contended that while Lincoln may not have been a Marxist he most assuredly had a socialist worldview and he had no problem whatever with socialists and communists. He was perfectly comfortable around them and their leftist views. The only thing Lincoln ever "emancipated" people from was their God-given liberties--and he was a master at that.