Antiwar.com editor Justin Raimondo will be wearing “all black to mourn the victims of Obama’s wars, and the death of our old republic” — Inauguration Day, 2009: A Day of Mourning. Just when “the death of our old republic” occurred is open to debate, but we all agree that it is dead.
Gore Vidal gave us a date, February 27, 1947, when “Harry Truman replaced the old republic with a national-security state whose sole purpose is to wage perpetual wars, hot, cold, and tepid.” Others, like Laurence M. Vance, suggest the date might go back as far as 1787 — Is Our Government Legitimate? Many of us would agree that the War of Northern Aggression serves as a convenient marker.
The American Lenin, pictured behind the next occupant of the White House, was born 200 years ago, and the media are already congratulating us on how far we’ve come, what progress we’ve made, whose dreams are being realized, etc. This is not to diminish the fact that America, the least racist country in the world, has been given the chance to show the world, and herself, her true colors.
But what’s missing is how little has changed and how much has remained the same since 1865, aside from the brief periods of light that were the nonconsecutive presidencies of the great Grover Cleveland, the “committed isolationist” who “opposed imperialism, taxes, corruption, patronage, subsidies and inflationary policies, while adhering to the principles of classical liberalism.”
You don’t need me to recount the many comparisons between Barack Obama and Abraham Lincoln. I just ask, will the former abolish Habeas Corpus as did the latter? Will the former imprison opponents to his wars, as did the latter, and war presidents in between like the other one to whom he is also often compared? Will he be, as Lincoln-scholar Thomas J. DiLorenzo asks, Abraham Delano Messiah Obama?
It seems evident that with “the death of our old republic” we need a new anthem. Here’s one possible suggestion, borrowing a rousing tune that many of you may already be familiar with: