On this day in history, his supply line cut by the Union Army, Confederate General John B. Hood withdrew his troops from Atlanta and set fire to military supplies and installations including some 81 railroad cars loaded with ammunition. These fires spread into the city of Atlanta causing serious difficulties for Rhett and Scarlett in their effort to blow town.
On September 2, 1864 Atlanta Mayor James Calhoun and along with members of Atlanta's City Council surrendered the city to representatives of Union General William Tecumseh Sherman.
Having been notified some days later of Sherman's intention to evacuate the residents of Atlanta from the city, Mayor Calhoun sent a letter asking the General to reconsider this decision.
Both that letter and Sherman's famed response follow.
We would encourage you to read both letters but for damn sure read the second as General Sherman's response represents the coldest and most stark analysis imaginable of one of mankind's most favored pastimes, and as such is one of the more important documents in all of history.
Atlanta, Georgia, September 11, 1864.
Major-General W. T. Sherman.
SIR: We the undersigned, Mayor and two of the Council for the city of Atlanta, for the time being the only legal organ of the people of the said city, to express their wants and wishes, ask leave most earnestly but respectfully to petition you to reconsider the order requiring them to leave Atlanta.
At first view, it struck us that the measure would involve extraordinary hardship and loss, but since we have seen the practical execution of it so far as it has progressed, and the individual condition of the people, and heard their statements as to the inconveniences, loss, and suffering attending it, we are satisfied that the amount of it will involve in the aggregate consequences appalling and heart-rending.
Many poor women are in advanced state of pregnancy, others now having young children, and whose husbands for the greater part are either in the army, prisoners, or dead. Some say: "I have such a one sick at my house; who will wait on them when I am gone?" Others say: "What are we to do? We have no house to go to, and no means to buy, build, or rent any; no parents, relatives, or friends, to go to." Another says: "I will try and take this or that article of property, but such and such things I must leave behind, though I need them much." We reply to them: "General Sherman will carry your property to Rough and Ready, and General Hood will take it thence on." And they will reply that: "But I want to leave the railroad at such a place, and cannot get conveyance from there on."
We only refer to a few facts, to try to illustrate in part how this measure will operate in practice. As you advanced, the people north of this fell back; and before your arrival here, a large portion of the people had retired south, so that the country south of this is already crowded, and without houses enough to accommodate the people, and we are informed that many are now staying in churches and other out-buildings.
This being so, how is it possible for the people still here (mostly women and children) to find any shelter? And how can they live through the winter in the woods -- no shelter or subsistence, in the midst of strangers who know them not, and without the power to assist them much, if they were willing to do so?
This is but a feeble picture of the consequences of this measure. You know the woe, the horrors, and the suffering, cannot be described by words; imagination can only conceive of it, and we ask you to take these things into consideration.
We know your mind and time are constantly occupied with the duties of your command, which almost deters us from asking your attention to this matter, but thought it might be that you had not considered this subject in all of its awful consequences, and that on more reflection you, we hope, would not make this people an exception to all mankind, for we know that no such instance ever having occurred -- surely never in the United States -- and what has this helpless people done, that they should be driven from their homes, to wander strangers and outcasts, and exiles, and to subsist on charity?
We do not know as yet the number of people still here; of those who are here, we are satisfied a respectable number, if allowed to remain at home, could subsist for several months without assistance, and a respectable number for a much longer time, and who might not need assistance at any time.
In conclusion, we most earnestly and solemnly petition you to reconsider this order, or modify it, and suffer this unfortunate people to remain at home, and enjoy what little means they have.
James M. Calhoun, Mayor
E.E. Rawson, Councilman.
S.C. Wells, Councilman.
Headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, in the Field, Atlanta, Georgia, September 12, 1864.
James M. Calhoun, Mayor, E.E. Rawson, S.C. Wells, representing City Council of Atlanta.
GENTLEMEN: I have your letter of the 11th, in the nature of a petition to revoke my orders removing all the inhabitants from Atlanta. I have read it carefully, and give full credit to your statements of the distress that will be occasioned, any yet shall not revoke my orders, because they were not designed to meet the humanities of the case, but to prepare for the future struggles in which millions of good people outside of Atlanta have a deep interest. We must have peace, not only in Atlanta, but in all America. To secure this, we must stop the war that now desolates our once happy and favored country. To stop war, we must defeat the rebel armies which are now arrayed against the laws and Constitution that all must respect and obey. To defeat those armies, we must prepare the way to reach them in their recesses, provided with the arms and instruments which enable us to accomplish our purpose. Now I know the vindictive nature of our enemy, that we may have many years of military operations from this quarter; and, therefore, deem it wise and prudent to prepare in time. The use of Atlanta for warlike purposes is inconsistent with its character as a home for families. There will be no manufactures, commerce, or agriculture here, for the maintenance of families, and sooner or later want will compel the inhabitants to go. Why not go now, when all the arrangements are completed for the transfer, instead of waiting till the plunging shot of contending armies will renew the scenes of the past month? Of course, I do not apprehend any such thing at this moment, but you do not suppose this army will be here until the war is over. I cannot discuss this subject with you fairly, because I cannot impart to you what we propose to do, but I assert that our military plans make it necessary for the inhabitants to go away, and I can only renew my offer of services to make their exodus in any direction as easy and comfortable as possible.
You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out. I know I had no hand in making this war, and I know I will make more sacrifices to-day than any of you to secure peace. But you cannot have peace and a division of our country. If the United States submits to a division now, it will not stop, but will go on until we reap the fate of Mexico, which is eternal war. The United States does and must assert its authority, wherever it once had power; for, if it relaxes one bit to pressure, it is gone, and I believe that such is the national feeling. This feeling assumes various shapes, but always comes back to that of Union. Once admit the Union, once more acknowledge the authority of the national Government, and, instead of devoting your houses and streets and roads to the dread uses of war, I and this army become at once your protectors and supporters, shielding you from danger, let it come from what quarter it may. I know that a few individuals cannot resist a torrent of error and passion, such as swept the South into rebellion, but you can point out, so that we may know those who desire a government, and those who insist on war and its desolation.
You might as well appeal against the thunder-storm as against these terrible hardships of war. They are inevitable, and the only way the people of Atlanta can hope once more to live in peace and quiet at home, is to stop the war, which can only be done by admitting that it began in error and is perpetuated in pride.
We don't want your negroes, or your horses, or your houses, or your hands, or any thing that you have, but we do want and will have a just obedience to the laws of the United States. That we will have, and, if it involves the destruction of your improvements, we cannot help it.
You have heretofore read public sentiment in your newspapers, that live by falsehood and excitement; and the quicker you seek for truth in other quarters, the better. I repeat then that, by the original compact of Government, the United States had certain rights in Georgia, which have never been relinquished and never will be; that the South began war by seizing forts, arsenals, mints, custom-houses, etc., etc., long before Mr. Lincoln was installed, and before the South had one jot or title of provocation. I myself have seen in Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Mississippi, hundreds of thousands of women and children fleeing from your armies and desperadoes, hungry and with bleeding feet. In Memphis, Vicksburg, and Mississippi, we fed thousands upon thousands of families of rebel soldiers left in our hands, and whom we could not see starve. Now that war comes home to you, you feel very different. You depreciate its horrors, but did not feel them when you sent car-loads of soldiers and ammunition, and moulded shells and shot, to carry war into Kentucky and Tennessee, to desolate the homes of hundreds of thousands of good people who only asked to live in peace at their old homes, and under the Government of their inheritance. But these comparisons are idle. I want peace, and believe it can only be reached through union and war, and I will ever conduct war with a view to perfect and early success.
But, my dear sirs, when peace does come, you may call on me for any thing. Then I will share with you the last cracker, and watch with you to shield your homes and families against danger from every quarter.
Now you must go, and take with you the old and feeble, feed and nurse them, and build for them, in more quiet places, proper habitations to shield them against the weather until the mad passions of men cool down, and allow the Union and peace once more to settle over your old homes at Atlanta. Yours in haste,
W.T. Sherman, Major-General commanding.
On November 15, 1864, General Sherman gave orders to burn all public buildings, machine shops, depots, and arsenals in the city of Atlanta. When the fires finally died out there remained only some four hundred building standing in all of Atlanta.
To quote Major General William Tecumseh Sherman on numerous occasions, in numerous speeches, most notably on June 19, 1879 at the graduation excercises of the Michigan Military Academy on the grounds of it's Orchard Lake campus, which campus is now home to Orchard Lake St. Mary Prep.
The photos all link up to somebody's site.
There are some random links within these excerpts that I couldn't get Drupal to identify within the edit function ... I've no clue what I did.
“The powers of financial capitalism had (a) far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland; a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world.” Prof. Carroll Quigley from Tragedy and Hope
"But what of the inequality in income that exists in today’s state-corporatist economy? Did the 1% acquire its wealth solely through hard work? The answer is hardly in many cases. Though there are some innovative businessmen who became rich by providing new and better products, the sharp increase in income inequality over the past two decades is due to an economic phenomenon outside of normal market operations.
Krugman and Stiglitz rightfully point out that the greatest periods of income inequality in the United States were the late 1920s and the period since the mid-1990s. What they fail to mention is that both these periods were not defined by capitalism run amok but by massive credit expansion. This expansion in credit, aided and abetted by the Federal Reserve’s loose money policy, is the real culprit behind vast income inequality." - James E. Miller, www.Mises.ca, 08-07-12
TARP, despite its mind-boggling size, was puny and practically irrelevant compared to the many trillions—how many trillions exactly is still being argued over—the Fed printed and handed out through a variety of programs, and the money started flowing to banks, and not only to American banks but to foreign banks, and to industrial companies like GE and to just about everybody on or off Wall Street who was well enough connected. With this money, they acquired assets and drove up their value. The banks ended up with more free money from the Fed than they knew what to do with, but instead of making low-cost loans, they bought treasuries and other assets, and they made profits not by doing what a bank should be doing but by benefiting from the Fed’s largesse. And they paid out record bonuses.
Thelargest banks, the prime beneficiaries, were eager to buy back the preferred stock and warrants they’d issued to TARP because it was expensive money compared to what the Fed was handing out, which was free. Thus, the Fed had done what Hank Paulson couldn’t bamboozle Congress into letting him do, namely unlimited funds to any entity, including his ownGoldman Sachs. And in doing so, the Fed had bailed out TARP.
TARP wasn’t large enough to prop up the house of cards that these mega-banks had become. It wasn’t large enough to even bail out Citi by itself. Had the Fed not stepped in with its trillions, the banks would have blown through the TARP billions in no time, and then that would have been it. The “catastrophic losses” would have been reality.
However, there were casualties. One of them was capitalism. The Fed had preserved rotten-to-the-core banks that should have collapsed—or rather it had bailed out stockholders, bondholders, and counterparties. Now these banks are even larger, and the creative destruction of capitalism, and thus capitalism itself, has been replaced by the Fed’s will and its printing press. Wolf Richter, Testosterone Pit
"Consider the inter-campus rivalry in recent years. There was a breather in 1992: Bush (Yale) vs. Clinton (Yale law School). Then came 2000. It heated up again: Gore (Harvard) vs. Bush, Jr. (Yale). But this was not a full-scale confrontation. Bush also went to Harvard Business School. Then, the nation got another breather. It was John Kerry, Yale (Skull & Bones) vs. Bush, Yale (Skull & Bones). In 2008, an outsider entered the fray: McCain (Annapolis). He battled Obama (Harvard Law). Today, Yale is on the outs. It's Harvard Law vs. Harvard Law, plus Harvard MBA (Romney earned both in one shot). Dr. Obama, J.D., vs. Dr. Romney, J.D., MBA.
There have been only two major presidential elections since 1932 that did not conform to this Punch and Judy arrangement. One was in 1964, when Goldwater was able to get the Republican nomination, and the Eastern Republican Establishment literally walked out of the convention, and then spent the rest of the summer torpedoing Goldwater's campaign. The other exception, which was only a partial exception, was Reagan's election in 1980. His new Chief of Staff was James Baker III. Baker, then as now, was one of the chief advisors to George H. W. Bush. The Reagan administration was run by Bush's men, with only a few exceptions, for all eight years. Then Bush replaced him.
The American people, decade after decade, generation after generation, are persuaded that presidential elections are fought over fundamental differences regarding the way the world works and the way the world ought to work. Yet every newly inaugurated President brings in his senior advisers, most of whom are men recruited by the Council on Foreign Relations, and some have been trained in the Trilateral Commission. This never gets any attention by the media, because the media at the top are run by members of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Trilateral Commission.
What I do believe is that there are factions within the American political establishment, just as there are within any establishment. I think this division has been going on since at least 1948. The big banks and big oil are in cahoots together, because that is where the money is.
There is a constant trade-off between the special interests of the two factions. Each side wants to get its share of the booty after each election. At the margin, one group or the other gets some benefits. One group or the other gets to preside over a giant federal bureaucracy in which virtually all of the employees are protected by Civil Service legislation, so no President has the power firing more than a few hundred of them.
No one is talking about the unfunded liabilities of the United States government, which are now in the range of $222 trillion. Nobody is talking about closing Guantánamo Bay prison, even though Obama promised that he would when he ran back in 2008. Nobody is talking about an immediate withdrawal of troops out of Afghanistan.
So, where is the great debate? It isn't about Medicare, Social Security, Afghanistan, the war on terror, Federal Reserve policy, a Federal Reserve audit, immigration, tax policy, or even the extension of the Bush tax cuts. Where exactly is the great ideological battlefield on which class warfare is being conducted?" - Gary North, PhD, Reality Check, www.GaryNorth.com,
"The West’s ragtag army of foreign hirelings, masquerading as the 'Free Syrian Army' have been badly beaten in their attempts to carve out a foothold of opposition in both Damascus and Aleppo. The Syrian Army, trained by Russian advisors and amply supplied with post-soviet equipment, has proven to be one of the most formidable of Israel’s opponents in the Middle East – that’s why the globalists are pushing to remove Assad and replace him with a Western puppet leader. While I’m no fan of tyranny, I’m even more opposed to Western puppets pretending to represent democracy while fronting for the new globalist tyranny. This week the US moved to create yet another phony threat in Syria in order to justify NATO military intervention and a no-fly zone.
In the first place, this is not a civil war – it’s a foreign intervention. Second, this threat is trap for Syria no matter what they do. One of England’s most venerable international reporters Robert Fisk got in on the ground in Syria and filed this report on the so-called 'Rebel army,' and confirmed 'They're a gang of foreigners.' One Syrian major reported to him that one of the prisoners they captured thought he was fighting the Israelis in Jerusalem, and didn’t know he was in Damascus! the US and NATO are gathering intelligence on Syrian air tactics in preparation for attacking it—as they actively did in Libya under the cover of enforcing a no-fly zone. Ultimately, the attack on Iran is what is driving the move against Syria, whose arsenal of deadly rockets poses a major risk to Israel should Syria help Iran retaliate after a pre-emptive strike by Israel on Iran.
There is a growing hysteria about the necessity of attacking Iran emanating from Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu and his defense minister Ehud Barak. Both are attempting to drum up support for the attack and insist that it be done soon. They and the media which promotes the imminent nuclear threat scenario are clearly attempting to prepare the public in both Israel and America for war - Joel Skousen, World Affairs Brief, 08-24-12
"The pieces come together...
"1) New software, associated with Google, will recognize customers in stores so as to offer them discounts; having your photos uploaded to allow this service will (for now) be voluntary.
"2) A new surveillance system in New York will store footage from cameras in, for example, the subway, so that when an unattended package is discovered, the police can look back in time to see who left it.
"4) The government is moving toward mandating black boxes on cars to record information thought to be useful in ascribing blame in crashes.
"5) Various police departments are beginning to use 'drone' aircraft to monitor the population.
"These are recent pieces of the coming world. They have not yet all been completely deployed and linked. Some are voluntary, for the moment. Others are in development. All are coming.
"Add the now-routine tracking of passports, cameras that read every passing license plate and record the time, NSA’s automated monitoring of email, Google’s and therefore the government’s knowledge of your searches, GPS tracking of cell phones, detailed records of bank transactions, and so on. Not all of these are instantly accessible by the police. They can easily be made accessible, and they move in that direction.
"In short, the technology exists for a detailed, unblinking, unforgetting watchfulness of the entire population beyond anything imagined, or perhaps imaginable, a few decades ago. Fred Reed
When Republicans are in office, the conservatives go to sleep and we lose our civil liberties like with the 'Patriot Act'. We lose liberties under Democrats as well as they expand and invent new government programs. Americans lose under either major party. The real issue of this election should be about runaway government police power and the loss of civil liberties." - Joel Skousen, World Affairs Brief, 08-17-12
"The United States won’t prosecute Corzine for raiding segregated customer accounts, but will happily convene a Grand Jury in preparation for prosecuting Julian Assange for exposing the truth about war crimes. Nobody knows how much dirt Corzine has on other Wall Street crooks. Not only may Corzine get away with corzining MF Global’s clients’ funds, he may well end up with a whole raft of seed money to play with from those former colleagues and associates who might prefer he remain silent regarding other indiscretions he may be aware of. But the issue at hand is the sense that we have entered a phase of exponential criminality and corruption. A slavering crook like Corzine who stole $200 million of clients’ funds can walk free.
Meanwhile, a man who exposed evidence of serious war crimes is for that act so keenly wanted by US authorities that Britain has threatened to throw hundreds of years of diplomatic protocol and treaties into the trash and raid the embassy of another sovereign state to deliver him to a power that seems intent not only to criminalise him, but perhaps even to summarily execute him. The Obama administration, of course, has made a habit of summary extrajudicial executions of those that it suspects of terrorism, and the detention and prosecution of whistleblowers. And the ooze of large-scale financial corruption, rate-rigging, theft and fraud goes on unpunished." - John, Aziz, azizonomics.com, 08-16-12 ...
"The Status Quo around the globe is trying to manage perceptions to foster the illusion that all the high expectations can be met; but the reassurances are increasingly hollow, and the promises increasingly threadbare. People are waking up, one at a time, to the reality that all the promises and guarantees are fantasy, and their emotional response is deeply negative: they feel betrayed by the Status Quo and its institutions, and they feel a volatile mixture of rage, distrust and resignation.
"Studies have found that people (usually those in the lower social and financial tiers) with low expectations tend to be happier than those with high (and unmet) expectations. The Status Quo bought the support of the masses by raising expectations of permanently rising prosperity and security for all. Now that these near-infinite claims cannot be fulfilled, the Status Quo has no institutional ability to lower expectations to more realistic levels. It only knows how to spin artifice and fantasy, in the vain hope that managing perceptions will substitute for managing reality. This is how credibility is lost.
"Managing perceptions is a dangerous game, as the perceptions are pushed ever-farther from reality, increasing the shockwave when the two snap together: it won't be reality rising to meet lofty perceptions, it will be perceptions and expectations plummeting to meet reality. This is how the Status Quo will collapse: it will lose the faith of its people, and become the target of their wrath." - Charles Hugh Smith, www.OfTwoMinds.com, 08-14-12
“The government that lies to you about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, about Iraq’s al Qaeda connections, about the Taliban in Afghanistan, about Osama bin Laden, about Libya and Gadhafi, about Iranian nukes, about Syria, about Pakistan, about Yemen and Somalia, about Bradley Manning, about Julian Assange and Wikileaks, indeed about everything under the sun, also lies to you about jobs, unemployment, economic recovery, GDP growth, 9/11, the ‘terrorist threat,’ everything.
Try to find anything that the government has said over the past 6 presidential terms that is not a lie. Other than some minor insignificant detail, ‘your’ government has been consistently lying to you about everything of importance. ‘Your’ government lies to you, because ‘your’ government has an agenda that it most certainly will not tell you about, because if you knew what it is, you would revolt. Putting down the revolt would divert the government from its agenda. It would also alert the rest of the world to the fact that the US government has an undeclared agenda of world domination, despite the costs to the American people and every other people. - Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, Former US Asst. Sec. of the Treasury
Our new motto ..... We're here to brighten your day.
Against logic there is no armor like ignorance.
America is a land of taxation that was founded to avoid taxation.
An economist is an expert who will know tomorrow why the things he predicted yesterday didn't happen today.
An intelligence test sometimes shows a man how smart he would have been to not have taken it.
As a matter of fact is an expression that precedes many an expression that isn't.
Bureaucracy defends the status quo long past the time when the quo has lost its status.
Committees have become so important nowadays that subcommittees have to be appointed to do the work.
Competence, like truth, beauty, and contact lenses, is in the eye of the beholder.
Early to bed, early to rise, work like hell, and advertise.
Education is a method whereby one acquires a higher grade of prejudices.
Equal opportunity means everyone will have a fair chance at being incompetent.
Every girl should use what Mother Nature gave her before Father Time takes it away.
America is a country that doesn't know where it is going but is determined to set a speed record getting there.
Expert: a man who makes three correct guesses consecutively.
Fortune knocks but once, but misfortune has much more patience.
Going to church doesn't make you any more a Christian than going to the garage makes you a car.
Heredity is what sets the parents of a teenager wondering about each other.
If a cluttered desk is the sign of a cluttered mind, what is the significance of a clean desk.
If you don't know where you're going, you will probably end up somewhere else.
In a hierarchy, every employee tends to rise to his level of incompetence.
It's better to have loved and lost than to have to do forty pounds of laundry a week.
Nobody can be perfect unless he admits his faults, but if he has faults how can he be perfect?
Originality is the fine art of remembering what you hear but forgetting where you heard it.
Psychiatry enables us to correct our faults by confessing our parents' shortcomings.
Some problems are so complex that you have to be highly intelligent and well informed just to be undecided about them.
Speak when you are angry - and you'll make the best speech you'll ever regret.
Television has changed the American child from an irresistible force to an immovable object
The best intelligence test is what we do with our leisure.
The great question is not whether you have failed, but whether you are content with failure.
The man who says he is willing to meet you halfway is usually a poor judge of distance.
There are two kinds of egotists: Those who admit it, and the rest of us.
Work is accomplished by those employees who have not yet reached their level of incompetence.
You can always tell a real friend: when you've made a fool of yourself he doesn't feel you've done a permanent job.