Shock: u2018The Progressive Professor' Opposes Nullification

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Recently by Thomas E. Woods, Jr.: The Central Committee Has Handed Down Its Denunciation

A very predictable progressive, I might add. Once in a while a progressive, like Jeff Taylor at Jacksonville State, realizes that gigantic, unresponsive bureaucracies that bomb foreign populations at the drop of a hat, just might – might! – not be so progressive. And that the old progressive slogan “small is beautiful” just might apply to the political order as well.

But then there are the Predictable Progressives, who stick to the 3×5 card of allowable opinion, and trot out all the old arguments. Half the time they’re not even arguments. It’s just, “Hey, this is an old idea! That means it’s stupid. Today we’re so much more sophisticated. The modern state has showered the world with so many blessings; what kind of uppity troublemaker could ever want to challenge it?”

Hence the “Progressive Professor,” who teaches at Florida Atlantic University, has a blog post called “Rand Paul Revives Nullification from the Pre-Civil War Years.” He writes:

By bringing up “nullification,” [Paul] is forgetting that the Civil War was fought over precisely that issue, the concept of states rights, that a state could nullify laws or actions of the federal government. And that viewpoint lost the war!

Rand Paul is not “forgetting” the Civil War, obviously, so that snide comment serves no purpose. The Civil War was not fought over nullification; in fact, South Carolina complained about nullification in its ordinance of secession, and Jefferson Davis condemned it in his farewell speech to the U.S. Senate. The war was indeed fought over the concept of state sovereignty, but it is obviously correct that the peoples of the states were sovereign. I have covered this. I am waiting for someone to refute me. Maybe the Progressive Professor will try. Probably not.

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Thomas E. Woods, Jr. [send him mail; visit his website], a senior fellow of the Ludwig von Mises Institute, is the creator of Tom Woods's Liberty Classroom, a libertarian educational resource. He is the author of eleven books, including the New York Times bestsellers Meltdown (on the financial crisis; read Ron Paul's foreword) and The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History, and most recently Nullification and Rollback.

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