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Abraham Lincoln the Early Adopter

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the techno-bunny dept.

United States 261

Hugh Pickens writes "On the 200th anniversary of his birth, President Abraham Lincoln's popular image as a log-splitting bumpkin is being re-assessed as historians have discovered that Lincoln had an avid interest in cutting-edge technology and its applications. During the war, Lincoln haunted the telegraph office (which provided the instant-messaging of its day) for the latest news from the front; he encouraged weapons development and even tested some new rifles himself on the White House lawn; and he is the only US president to hold a patent (No. 6469, granted May 22, 1849). It was for a device to lift riverboats over shoals. 'He not only created his own invention but had ideas for other inventions, such as an agricultural steam plow and a naval steam ram, [and] was fascinated by patent cases as an attorney and also by new innovations during the Civil War,' says Jason Emerson, author of Lincoln the Inventor. But Lincoln's greatest contribution to the war effort was his use of the telegraph. When Lincoln took office the White House had no telegraph connection. Lincoln 'developed the modern electronic leadership model, says Tom Wheeler, author of Mr. Lincoln's T-Mails: The Untold Story of How Abraham Lincoln Used the Telegraph To Win the Civil War. At a time when electricity was a vague scientific concept and sending signals through wires was 'mind boggling,' Lincoln was fascinated by the telegraph and developed it into a political and military tool that allowed him to project himself to the front to monitor and track what was going on. 'If he were alive today, we'd call him an early adopter,' says Wheeler."

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261 comments

and I am the first poster! (-1, Offtopic)

koutbo6 (1134545) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857825)

couldn't resist .. .sry :)

Re:and I am the first poster! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26857839)

Better a first post thing than the racist shit.

Attention! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858009)

Lincoln held opinions not very different from those of the majority of his racist countrymen. Even if slavery was wrong, "there is a physical difference between the white and black races that will for ever forbid the two races from living together on terms of social and political equality." His solution was a form of ethnic cleansing: shipping blacks off to Liberia, or Haiti, or Central America â" anywhere as long as it wasnâ(TM)t the United States.

Lincoln's views may have started to change once he saw how bravely black troops fought for the Union cause, but even at the time of his death, he was willing to leave the fate of emancipated slaves in the hands of bigoted state legislators. "Whether Lincoln ever went beyond being an anti-slavery white supremacist," George Fredrickson writes, "is a question that is difficult to resolve."

So should we tear down his memorial on the National Mall? The answer to this question may surprise you.

Mod Parent UP! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858065)

The parent must be modded in the upward direction.

Re:Attention! (2, Interesting)

Kokuyo (549451) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858163)

"there is a physical difference between the white and black races that will for ever forbid the two races from living together on terms of social and political equality."

Looking at the western world today,I'm not quite sure whether he wasn't actually right... I see no social and political equality.

The US now has a black president. That is cool and all, but looking back at how much his blackness was hyped in the media all around the world...

Mind, I'm not judging whether it's a bad thing or a good thing... I'm just observing.

MOD PARENT DOWN! Kokuyo is a thief and a LIAR (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858213)

On the other hand, this post should be modded in the "downward direction" because he is not quite trolling, but it is a huge lump of flamebait flung in your face. Don't stand for it.

Re:Attention! (5, Insightful)

phosphorylate this (1412807) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858563)

You see no social equality because people of eropean-decendent have done a mediocre job of trying to bring it about. While on the other side of the equation people of African decent are trying to jump up 1000-years of technological development with all the historical power-imbalences that entails.

Think about how HUGE social differences were - 200 years ago every black man in America was a slave, think on the sheer brutality that implies. In the 1960's (within living memory) seggregation was an established part of much of American society. When slavery was abolished it's not like education or skilled-jobs suddenly jumped into black communities, these things take generations to nuture from parent to child.

Any "physical differences" between races are at most 3rd or 4th order effects. My guess is it wil take a 100 years or more before social equality has advanced to the point where being black and in power in AMERICA is not noteworthy let alone the rest of the world. You've just elected your first black president - celebrate man this is how progress is made, and how we make up for the misdeeds and ill-gotten gains of pyshcopathic forefathers (on every side).
 

Re:Attention! (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858649)

>>>That is cool and all, but looking back at how much his blackness was hyped in the media all around the world...

Do you think it would have been any different if Hillary had won?
The first time is notable, whether it be a black president or a woman president.
Next time it will be no big deal.

Re:Attention! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858173)

People love to post comments like this where they assume some historical figure was little more than a monolith. There are also hideously racist quotes by Theodore Roosevelt. Using these quotes ignores that both of these men changed their views throughout their lives. Lincoln ran his 1864 campaign on winning the Civil War and passing the 13-15th amendments. So yes, he was bigoted at a point in his life, but he still accomplished more in making people free and equal than you could ever imagine. Unlike you, when Lincoln changed his views, he also changed history.

So go ahead, focus on one quote and ignore the complexity of his entire life. And go ahead and rally against a statue.

not very different eh? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858201)

"It is also unsatisfactory to some that the elective franchise is not given to the colored man. I would myself prefer that it were now conferred on the very intelligent, and on those who serve our cause as soldiers." -- 4 days before he was assassinated
I myself, would have gone a step further and stripped the right from the very stupid (joe six-packs)

Parent is NOT a troll (4, Informative)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858543)

The parent post certainly expresses what we today consider racist opinions, but they are what Lincoln thought, they are a direct response to its parent post, and it is not a troll.

Mods -- just because history is racist does not make reports on history racist.

No... (5, Funny)

zackhugh (127338) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857831)

If he was alive today, we'd call him a zombie...

Re:No... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26857871)

if he was alive, i don't see how he could be undead as well.

Re:No... (1, Offtopic)

NotPenny'sBoat (1475835) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857895)

It would be hard, but we'd have to decapitate one of our greatest Presidents for the good of all.

Re:No... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858669)

Greatest presidents? Lincoln was a piece of shit.

He suspended Habeus Corpus for everybody. You know what happened if you printed a newspaper(even in the North, yes) that was anti-Lincoln? Your ass went to jail, no trial, no questions.

Re:No... (2, Funny)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857899)

Or a really powerful Jedi. For all you Robot Chicken fans out there.

Re:No... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26857983)

No one can stop Time Lincoln!

unless he is surprised... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858061)

by the Spanish Inquisition!!!!!!!

Re:No... (1)

Fumus (1258966) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858089)

Nah. The flesh has probably rotten away by now. He'd be a lich.

If he was alive today he'd be busted... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858211)

...for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. He even wrote a letter to the Hohner Harmonica company stating how he loved to sit on his porch, smoking "sweet hemp" from a corncob pipe and playing his harmonica. He very likely smoked it even while in the Whitehouse, or on or about the Whitehouse grounds, since hemp smoking was rather commonplace in the mid-1800's.

mod parent informative (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858627)

let people see another facet of live in 19th century

Re:No... (2, Insightful)

DittoBox (978894) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858223)

No. Zombies are undead. Please hand in your geek card.

Re:No... (2, Funny)

Timosch (1212482) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858427)

No, we'd call him a patent troll.
SCNR

he also used the word nigger a lot (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26857845)

how progressive. so much for your hero obama. he was a fucking racist who would have been sympathetic towards you, at best.

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (0, Flamebait)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857891)

Eh...Obama's church taught Black Liberation Theology which is an overtly, and unabashedly, racist ideology against whites.

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (1, Interesting)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858051)

If Obama's church were so hostile towards whites, it wouldn't have a fairly large amount of whites in attendance every Sunday.

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (1, Troll)

jcr (53032) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858285)

Heh.. So, you've never met one of the lefties who loves to wallow in guilt, eh?

-jcr

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858335)

there are far more freepers who are so busy slobbering Rushes knob they don't don't stop to see if the crap they spew makes any sense.

Why is that? (1)

gbutler69 (910166) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858293)

If my car didn't use gasoline, I wouldn't like peas. Huh?

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858577)

>>>If Obama's church were so hostile towards whites, it wouldn't have a fairly large amount of whites in attendance every Sunday.

Question:

How do you post such blatant (and easily debunked) lies like that, and still live with yourself? I just youtubed not one but several different videos, and I did not see one single white face in the audience. Not one.

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (3, Informative)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858599)

P.S. I just reviewed the video again. I did see ONE white face. Still not a "large amount" as the grandparent falsely claimed. Check it out for ye self. Listen to the hate speech (and yes that is the proper term): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hwQWuQVE6sw [youtube.com]

"Can't we all just...get along?"

Why repeat that post title? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858697)

I'm white. I've listened to it before and find no reason why I wouldn't attend. You just don't understand (or want to understand) what they're talking about.

I don't agree with everything they say, but trying to paint them as people who hate whites is flat-out wrong.

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858311)

NIGGERS SCARE ME!

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (3, Insightful)

jessica_alba (1234100) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857979)

he held racist views, but he also said of black persons "but in the right to eat the bread without leave of anybody else which his own hand earns, he is my equal" in other words, he didn't let his prejudice get in the way of policy.

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858083)

He was a product of his times. Everyone was some sort racist back then. Sort of like how you're a troll.

Re:he also used the word nigger a lot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858283)

At the time, "nigger" was not a descriptive term, not an insult.

sigh (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26857885)

the telegraph office (which provided the instant-messaging of its day)

Why always the painfully stupid condescension?

Communicating science (or history) well to a general audience doesn't require this. See Carl Sagan. If anything, such unnecessary analogies make things *less* clear.

Re:Mod parent up (1)

jrothwell97 (968062) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858045)

The closest thing to instant messaging in the days of Lincoln was talking face-to-face. Telegraph, optical, electronic or otherwise, doesn't really have an equivalent today, because it had a ridiculously low bandwidth and slower transmission times.

Re:Mod parent up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858369)

You call a 160 character SMS message high bandwidth? Hell, you could send longer telegrams!

Another early adopter (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26857897)

Mr. Goatse [goatse.fr] .

This is your future and you know it.

Another tick (4, Insightful)

Dr. Eggman (932300) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857901)

Another positive tick towards my overarching theory: If knowledge is power, then communication is both your greatest weapon and your most vital line of supplies.

Though the names change... (5, Insightful)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857915)

When Lincoln took office the White House had no telegraph connection. Lincoln 'developed the modern electronic leadership model'
 
Is that what kids are calling it nowadays? I must be out of date - I was raised to call it micromanagement.

Re:Though the names change... (5, Insightful)

GaryOlson (737642) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858013)

Technology allows an even greater ability to micromanage; but does not necessarily imply micromanagement. Faster communications technology can make it possible for the logistics elements to shift behind the scene to better support the front line. Equally well, better technology can give the front line information to modify their plans/actions to prepare for the consequences of out-of-theater actions which will have a definitive impact.

Micromanagement is a meme attached to people -- not technology.

Re:Though the names change... (5, Funny)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858157)

Micromanagement is a meme attached to StarCraft.

Fixed.

Re:Though the names change... (1)

zullnero (833754) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858167)

What's wrong with that? Do you honestly think that other people always make the best choices, every time, regardless of how little or how much information they actually possess?

I'm not sure what the kids are calling THAT nowadays, but what they called it when I was a lad was an IDIOT.

Mr. Lincoln's Shemales (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26857921)

I read that second book title as "Mr. Lincoln's Shemales." I need to get back to more traditional pr0n surfing habits.

Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (4, Insightful)

religious freak (1005821) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857935)

President Abraham Lincoln's popular image as a log-splitting bumpkin is being re-assessed

I doubt any serious Lincoln scholar would ever say Lincoln was a "log-splitting bumpkin". He was a brilliant, self educated man with a ferocious curiosity and probably one of the highest IQs of any president we've ever had. The guy who managed to end slavery, preserve the Union, AND assist in ushering in modern medical techniques on the battlefield a log-splitting bumpkin? Yeah, sure.

It's been said that because he was such a deep and complex personality, our society sees Lincoln not necessarily as who he was, but he is a reflection of our current state of mind as a nation. When we began to focus on racial issues, he was an obvious focal point, when depression became more widely known, he was thought to have been depressed, gay rights bring him up as possibly being our first gay president... and slashdot calls him an early adopter.

He was probably our greatest American president ever.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (2, Informative)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858077)

He was probably our greatest American president ever

Very much so, and he was a hell of a killer too. As a percentage of population, Lincoln killed more Americans than all the rest of the US Presidents combined and by a fairly wide margin.

If we went by percentage of population in casualties, the Civil War, if fought today, would result in almost 7 million dead. If there were slaves in the South today, there would be more than a few people that might suggest that such titanic destruction is not worth it.

Even in absolute terms, there were casualties at one civil war battle, Antienam, than there have been in Iraq for the entire war, and Lincoln just kept right on rolling with the war.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1, Flamebait)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858219)

It was a civil war, of course it would have the most American deaths what with Americans being on both sides of the battle.

The only down side to the civil war is, upon reflection, we probably would be better off without those dead weight southern states.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858559)

Generally, we assign the blame for aggressive acts to the instigator, not the victim acting in self defense. In this case, the aggressor was Jefferson Davis, who ordered General Beauregard to attack American troops.

Those traitors and their followers were the ones responsible for killing so many Americans, not the president.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (4, Insightful)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858597)

He was probably our greatest American president ever

Very much so, and he was a hell of a killer too. As a percentage of population, Lincoln killed more Americans than all the rest of the US Presidents combined and by a fairly wide margin.

If you make that assertion because you think he was responsible for the entire war, think again. The hotheads in the south who seceded before he even took the oath of office, and the even hotter heads in South Carolina who started the fighting -- those are the idiots who started the war.

The south is especialy culpable because 50 years before during the War of 1812, when the New England states tried to open negotitations with the national government on seceding [wikipedia.org] , the south was foremost in calling it treason. 50 years later they decided treason was perfectly fine.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858103)

The guy who managed to end slavery, preserve the Union, AND assist in ushering in modern medical techniques on the battlefield a log-splitting bumpkin?

While I am with you that he's certainly no log splitting bumpkin I think that giving him any credit in battlefield medicine is a bit extreme. It would be like giving Bush Sr credit for stealth technology. Noticing a good idea as a good idea doesn't make you one of it's founders.

As for the other two noted feats? He did those by bashing in the skull of his enemy. You don't need to have a lot of wisdom to bring that about.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

johanatan (1159309) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858493)

Noticing a good idea as a good idea doesn't make you one of it's founders.

You should tell that to our beloved father of the internet--Al Gore.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (2, Informative)

ChrisMaple (607946) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858123)

Lincoln did not end slavery, not even in the U.S. (Nixon did that, when he ended the draft). His public actions against slavery applied only to states over which he had no control, as any honest historian will tell you.

Lincoln introduced an income tax, suspended habeus corpus, and viciously supressed freedom of speech and assembly.

By insisting upon preserving the union, he caused the deaths of more North Americans than any president to this very day.

After the suppression of Shay's Rebellion (1787) and the Whisky Rebellion (1794), Lincoln's Civil War is the most significant advance of big government over freedom in our history.

The greatest American President ever? Hah! People should spit at his memory.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (2, Informative)

Flavio (12072) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858235)

Exactly.

The United States holds the distinction of being the only country where a civil war was tied to the issue of slavery. To put matters in perspective, it would've been cheaper to buy all the slaves and a fair amount of land for them than to pay for the civil war.

The twisted notion that Lincoln's civil war was an act of brilliance stinks of indoctrination.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (3, Insightful)

johanatan (1159309) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858415)

Do you think that if the slaves were purchased that way, it would've ended slavery? Wouldn't the South have just brought more slaves in to replace the old?

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (2, Insightful)

Flavio (12072) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858533)

Do you think that if the slaves were purchased that way, it would've ended slavery? Wouldn't the South have just brought more slaves in to replace the old?

Of course the South would've brought more slaves.

My point is that the war was so expensive that even buying the slaves and land for their families would've been cheaper. I never claimed this was a practical solution. If I had to propose a solution, it would involve not provoking the South with tariffs which essentially amounted to commercial blockades, and avoiding a war altogether.

Americans are taught that the US civil war was about freeing the slaves, when in fact the slaves were only an aspect of a larger economic dispute.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

pcolaman (1208838) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858457)

Yeah, because buying the slaves and land would've fixed the problem. I'm sure that the Southern States, having received said lump sum payment, would've abolished slavery after this. This reminds me of arguments that I have with left wing nuts who claim if we were nice to the terrorists that they'd leave us alone. There is no guarantee that either the states would've sold the north the slaves or that they would've refrained from getting more slaves afterwards.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

Flavio (12072) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858581)

Yeah, because buying the slaves and land would've fixed the problem. I'm sure that the Southern States, having received said lump sum payment, would've abolished slavery after this. This reminds me of arguments that I have with left wing nuts who claim if we were nice to the terrorists that they'd leave us alone. There is no guarantee that either the states would've sold the north the slaves or that they would've refrained from getting more slaves afterwards.

Go read my comment again. I never suggested that the North should've bought the slaves. In fact, buying the slaves would raise their market price and encourage the South to get more of them. My point was that the war was so absurdly expensive that it could've paid for the slaves and land for their families.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

publiclurker (952615) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858481)

Why should you be expected to pay someone to do the right thing? Your shallow attempts at revisionism are pathetic.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858161)

He was a [...] man with [...] probably one of the highest IQs of any president we've ever had.

Out of curiosity, do you have any evidence to back that up? I don't doubt he was a bright guy, and I certainly agree that describing him as a "log-splitting bumpkin" is (or would be, *if* anyone actually did) ridiculous, but I have a distinct feeling that your main reason for saying he was the single most intelligent POTUS is that he's the single most-admired (by you) one.

And while that's an easy mistake to make and a very common fallacy, it's still a fallacy.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858333)

Yeah, it would be pretty hard to compete with Jefferson. Lincoln was a smart man, but let's not kid ourselves and think he was smarter than Jefferson. No US President has been smarter than Jefferson and only one US statesman could definitively be claimed as being smarter than him. Lincoln was a great man, but that doesn't mean that he was the tallest, strongest, smartest, blah blah blah.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

pcolaman (1208838) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858499)

AFAIK, he's the tallest President ever at 6'4". Unless you know of someone else. Most presidents were actually rather average in height.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

attackc0de (692716) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858683)

Jefferson Davis was a much better president. ;)

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (2, Insightful)

religious freak (1005821) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858565)

Well, no. That why I put the qualifiers "probably" and "one of the" in there... so you caught me. I base my statement off of my own readings and studies of Lincoln, which are not up to a scholarship level, just casual. But at least a couple of the scholars I've read or listened to have said he was among the brightest of any US president.

So in terms of hard, scientific validity, there is no basis for that statement - just a subjective assessment of him by myself, and of the true Lincoln scholars.

If you're to believe this link [weboferudites.com] (which I don't), he was NOT among the very brightest, but I think these folks are just guessing as much as I am; they just put a few more numbers behind it.

However, I personally still believe the statement I made to be true, given the qualifiers I put around it. Lincoln was undeniably an intelligent person, and despite what some of the cave dweller respondents to my comment have to say about him "destroying civil liberties", or whatever, navigating a civil war, preserving the Union, etc, etc, was not an easy task. Add to that his clear and insatiable curiosity to learn and explore above other presidents, and I think there is a pretty reasonable preponderance of evidence for the statement I made. But that is just my own subjective conclusion.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (4, Insightful)

zullnero (833754) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858179)

The Log splitting thing was campaign fluff at the time. Back in the old days, populism got you elected. If he ran on the campaign that he was a geeky lawyer, he would have been laughed out of politics in those days.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (4, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858417)

>>>Back in the old days, populism got you elected.

Nothing's changed.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

Myrddin Wyllt (1188671) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858721)

Careful with those size tens, matey, you just stepped all over zullneros shiny new joke.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858321)

The one drawback of Lincoln was that he was racist - as were most people of his time. He used the word "nigger" in his 1860 campaign, and he once was remarked that he did not care if slavery ended or continued. "If freeing the slaves would preserve the Union, I would do it. If keeping slavery would preserve the Union, I would do that." (Source: CBS News Morning show, this past Thursday)

>>>self educated man with a ferocious curiosity and probably one of the highest IQs of any president we've ever had.

1. John Quincy Adams, IQ 175
2. Thomas Jefferson, 160 average college graduate, 109

http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/bpl/pops/2006/00000027/00000004/art00001;jsessionid=1i07kdv5wgn5p.alexandra?format=print [ingentaconnect.com]

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858381)

Continued:
3. John F. Kennedy, 159.8
4. Bill Clinton, 159
5. Jimmy Carter, 156.8
6. Woodrow Wilson, 155.2
7. Theodore Roosevelt, 153
8. Chester A. Arthur, 152.3
9. Abraham Lincoln, 150 ---- I thought he'd rank higher, but he is just a "dumb" Republican after all (just joking)

And here's the bottom of the barrel:

Harry S. Truman, 140
George W. Bush, 138.5
Ulysses S. Grant, 130
average college graduate, 109

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858469)

Gee, why don't you just marry him.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (2, Funny)

religious freak (1005821) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858685)

Funny story: I thought I did, but it turned out to just be a really weird Amish dude. I finally figured it out when Lincoln didn't even know how to use a button. Gay Lincoln marriage... what a waste of 15 years... but thanks for the suggestion.

Re:Log-splitting bumpkin, huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858677)

Sorry I couldn't say. All I know about Lincoln's image I got from looking at $5 bills.

Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (1)

transporter_ii (986545) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857945)

By declaring martial law and throwing a lot of the Constitution (Habeas Corpus, for instance) out the window:

http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/historicdocuments/a/lincolnhabeas.htm?rd=1 [about.com]

He had a lot journalist in the North jailed for no reason other than he thought should be (no evidence needed).

In fact, a lot of things that took place under Bush would not have been possible if it weren't for Abraham Lincoln.

Transporter_ii

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (1, Insightful)

MindlessAutomata (1282944) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857965)

The worst part of American patriotism is that we deify leaders of the past. FDR, another revered leader, also put certain racial groups into concentration camps. I've seen plenty of liberals defend him as saying that he wanted to "protect them", which is just as sensible as saying Hitler wanted to protect the Jews.

When people have a hero, they never let go, and will always ignore their evils and even make excuses for them.

We always lament the politicians of today and then glorify them long after they are dead, forgetting that they were what they were--politicians, first and foremost.

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (4, Interesting)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858067)

I've seen plenty of liberals defend him as saying that he wanted to "protect them", which is just as sensible as saying Hitler wanted to protect the Jews.

In all fairness, I don't recall FDR having Japanese Americans killed.

But yes, we tend to forget the negative or parts. It turns out that Lincon was pretty big on racism, told racist jokes about blacks, thought that interracial marriage was wrong, and that whites were the better race, all this despite believing that slavery was morally wrong. But here's the catch, if he wasn't still a racist, he wouldn't have been elected because the idea that the races really are equal would be considered far too radical.

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (4, Interesting)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858455)

>>>In all fairness, I don't recall FDR having Japanese Americans killed.

"Some Japanese Americans died in the camps due to inadequate medical care and the emotional stresses they encountered. Several were killed by military guards for allegedly resisting orders." "These Japanese Americans, half of whom were children, were incarcerated for up to 4 years, without due process of law or any factual basis, in bleak, remote camps surrounded by barbed wire and armed guards."

FDR also arrested white Americans who stood in his way - the most famous one being Henry Ford (for not complying with the NRA's price minimums), but Ford could hire enough lawyers to persuade FDR to drop the case. Others were not so fortunate. FDR was a dark, dark man and now historians digging through the archives are just now discovering how dark he was.

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858561)

As you've mentioned, considering the time it would have been hard to find many people that weren't what we'd call racist now and he wouldn't have been elected.

While some people do look at the past with rose tinted glasses some people look too hard to find a reason to tear down historic figures. I think people don't realise our way of life is hasn't been around that long at all. The truth about Lincoln almost certainly lies in between the positive and negative views of him.

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (1)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858175)

The worst part of American patriotism is that we deify leaders of the past. FDR, another revered leader, also put certain racial groups into concentration camps. I've seen plenty of liberals defend him as saying that he wanted to "protect them", which is just as sensible as saying Hitler wanted to protect the Jews.

Playing Devil's Advocate here, but I don't recall FDR getting any ovens fired up.

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (1)

wytcld (179112) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858329)

I've seen plenty of liberals defend him as saying that he wanted to "protect them", which is just as sensible as saying Hitler wanted to protect the Jews.

Okay, I've never seen this defense. But it can work. The only Japanese in America put into camps were on the West Coast. The Japanese Navy had active plans to invade there. They'd already successfully attacked Hawaii. If Japanese marines had come aground, we can be sure that national guard and civilian militias would be firing on anyone who looked Japanese.

Now, for your Hitler parallel: The Israeli Navy was poised to land Jewish marines on the beaches of Germany! Oh wait, Israel didn't have a navy, didn't even have Israel.

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858511)

US forces did not mistake any other southeast Asians as Japanese forces on any large scale.

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (1)

MindlessAutomata (1282944) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858615)

Yeah, force the Japanese americans in the suburbs to shoddy camps, having them lose their property, their homes, to "protect" them.

Re:Yeah, he set the stage for modern America (2, Informative)

gyrogeerloose (849181) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858693)

By declaring martial law and throwing a lot of the Constitution (Habeas Corpus, for instance) out the window

That's not quite correct. Check out Article I, Section 9, paragraph 2 of the U.S. Constitution:

"The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it."

I think the Civil War could accurately be considered a case of rebellion.

"the instant-messaging of its day" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26857961)

and "T-Mails"...really...

Please, just please kill me now...
seriously... this is a TECHNOLOGY blog... we know what the hell a telegraph is... no need to dumb it down.

Lincoln was a gay, wait no he was a nerd. (4, Interesting)

King_of_Mars (1477725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26857977)

This looks like another incarnation of the "Lincoln was _______" phenomena. Apparently Lincoln was so awesome that he has to embody every singly significant idea or social event since his death.

Re:Lincoln was a gay, wait no he was a nerd. (0, Redundant)

noidentity (188756) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858437)

This one is the worst of all: "Lincoln was NOT Lincoln. He was someone else!"

Re:Lincoln was a gay, wait no he was a nerd. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858523)

This one is the worst of all: "Lincoln was NOT Lincoln. He was someone else!"

who is purportedly also Lincoln, aka Lincoln?

or perhaps it was an identical force that simply happens to exhibit identical observable properties to Lincoln.

Thats Ell Eye Enn SEE Oh Ell Enn. I KNOW HOW TO SPELL LINCOLN!

oh my barely correlating mess of hell going on in my head now.

Re:Lincoln was a gay, wait no he was a nerd. (1)

mr100percent (57156) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858713)

It's like the opposite of Hitler. Everyone knows Hitler loved the things that decent people hate

First post: What hath god wrought! (4, Interesting)

Steve1952 (651150) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858021)

Given that the telegraph should be considered the true precursor of the internet, I recommend that Lincoln be given the honorary Slashdot number of "0".

*** "What hath god wrought" is considered to be the first documented telegraph message.

Re:First post: What hath god wrought! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858351)

I know I am going to be crucified for this, as /. is the last Republi-nazi haven in the world, besides Fox News.
But Obama was the first president to adopt a Blackberry, so another parallel with Lincoln and his telegraph thing.
Now, crucify me Republi-nazis with all your partisan hatred!
(thanks God I am posting as anonymous coward...)

Re:First post: What hath god wrought! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858411)

WTF!? it's not like the guy invented it. can we please be real about this?

The only president with a patent? Not true, unless (5, Informative)

LittleBigScript (618162) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858047)

...unless you read the wikipedia on Thomas Jefferson: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Jefferson [wikipedia.org]
There are none of Thomas Jefferson's patents on the page. In fact it doesn't even mention his involvement in the patent act of 1790, http://etext.virginia.edu/journals/EH/EH40/walter40.html [virginia.edu]

He invented a Moldboard Plow Of Least Resistance, Wheel Cipher, Portable Copying Press, and an improved polygraph for copying handwritten text.
http://cti.itc.virginia.edu/~meg3c/classes/tcc313/200Rprojs/jefferson_invent/invent.html [virginia.edu]

Re:The only president with a patent? Not true, unl (1)

Steve1952 (651150) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858191)

Thomas Jefferson invented things, yes, but did he file for patents on his inventions? no. He was the first commissioner of patents, and probably did not because it was a conflict of interest.

Re:The only president with a patent? Not true, unl (4, Interesting)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858529)

There was no such thing as conflict of interest back then. The real reason Jefferson did not patent is likely the same reason inventor Benjamin Franklin did not patent. They chose to share their ideas for the benefit of all - what we would call public domain. Franklin was already the wealthiest man in America, so he didn't need the cash.

And Jefferson was very very poor, the equivalent of $100,000 in debt in today's terms, but he still preferred to give things away. Jefferson's personal library was donated as the foundation for the Second Library of Congress. (The first was burned to the ground by the British.)

 

At last! (4, Funny)

hcoal (1296043) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858149)

Is 1863 the year of the Linux desktop?

Re:At last! (3, Funny)

Potor (658520) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858215)

you mean the Linux logtop.

ta3o (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26858317)

dying. Everyon^e

Another thing Lincoln pioneered... (1)

jcr (53032) | more than 5 years ago | (#26858357)

If you think the government's current attacks on free speech over the internet are bad, you should read up on Lincoln's crackdown on telegraph lines (not to mention all the newspapers he closed, etc.)

-jcr

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