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-Demosthenes-

Reasons and Causes of the American Revolution

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will defend my other post the war was mainly centered on your greed for territory to expand settlements.

 

 

Not all, the Colonies get passed the French and Indian War, during which they were very independent with little restriction or help from "The Mother Country". So after Britain didn't have to deal with France anymore all of a sudden Britain decides that they want to control the colonies again. This was not very liked.

 

 

Added to this was the fact that about a third of the population of the population was not even English in decent, and they didn't like this whole "Church of England" thing, most didn't have a religion or were in some other protestant religion.

 

 

So after the French and Indian War all of a sudden the Colonies are being taxed. I'm sure you can imagine what if would feel like to be taxed and only have "virtual representation" meaning the people who represent you in parlament don't even have to be from the Colonies to represent the Colonies. They could be anyone.

 

 

Now we get to mercantilism. Britain had the idea that they could buy raw materials and crops from the Colonies, then make products and sell them back at an elevated price. Now to accomplish this they did a couple of things:

 

 

The Navigation Acts of the 17th century prohibited the Colonists form making or producing anything other than crops or raw materials. In 1732 they ordered more specifically that they could not sell colony made hats, then they made the molasses act that made it so they could buy any molasses from the West Indies (unless they wanted to pay for the high tariffs). Then in 1750 parliament ordered that the Colonies couldn’t manufacture Iron products (so we would have to buy them from Britain).

 

 

The practice of mercantilism is so obvious, so blatant; it was only a matter of time before it blew up in Britain’s face.

 

 

If it’s greedy to not want to be taken advantage of, and not have to sell and buy all of our stuff to Britain, then there is something wrong with your definition of greedy.

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Isn't history supposed to use even more references than science does?

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Added to this was the fact that about a third of the population of the population was ]not even English in decent[/b]' date=' and they didn't like this whole "Church of England" thing, most didn't have a religion or were in some other protestant religion.[/color']

 

 

]

If you mean they weren't decent enough to want to pay their taxes then I think you hit the nail (nice British forged variety, a privelege to use etc.) right on the head. :D

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If it’s greedy to not want to be taken advantage of, and not have to sell and buy all of our stuff to Britain, then there is something wrong with your definition of greedy.

Hmmm. I see we are casually missing out the part where the British declared Slavery illegal, and American landowners decided to rebel rather than accept the loss of profits. I don't think that was an example of Englands greed.

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I'm reading an interesting new book right now called "1776" by David McCullough that covers some of this ground. I don't have anything to add to the discussion, but I did want to mention that the book is pretty interesting.

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I can't remember where i heard this from but i think it pretty much sums it up: "The difference between generals and terrorists is the difference between winners and losers."

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Isn't history supposed to use even more references than science does?

Ok, I'll look for some links.

Not all, the Colonies get passed the French and Indian War, during which they were very independent with little restriction or help from "The Mother Country". So after Britain didn't have to deal with France anymore all of a sudden Britain decides that they want to control the colonies again. This was not very liked.

http://www.ushistory.org/march/phila/background.htm

The Colonists were outraged. After years of "Salutary Neglect" wherein Colonial taxes were not collected by the British, the new policy was unwelcome[/i'].
I'm sure you can imagine what if would feel like to be taxed and only have "virtual representation" meaning the people who represent you in parlament don't even have to be from the Colonies to represent the Colonies. They could be anyone.

http://www.ushistory.org/march/phila/background.htm

Among the rights granted to all Englishmen was a voice in Parliament — something they didn't have. With the Stamp Act' date=' "Taxation without representation is tyranny," became a battle cry[/i''].
Added to this was the fact that about a third of the population of the population was not even English in decent.[/font']

http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_761569964/American_Revolution.html

The American population also changed in composition...Migrants from Germany, Scotland, and Ireland made up at least 30 percent of the white population[/i'].
they didn't like this whole "Church of England" thing' date=' most didn't have a religion or were in some other protestant religion.

[/quote']

http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_761569964/American_Revolution.html

Diversity existed not only in the population but also in religious life. Many of the American colonists were not members of any church. Of those who had a religious affiliation, the vast majority were Protestant Christians[/i'].
Now we get to mercantilism. Britain had the idea that they could buy raw materials and crops from the Colonies' date=' then make products and sell them back at an elevated price. Now to accomplish this they did a couple of things:[/color']

The Navigation Acts of the 17th century prohibited the Colonists form making or producing anything other than crops or raw materials. In 1732 they ordered more specifically that they could not sell colony made hats, then they made the molasses act that made it so they could buy any molasses from the West Indies (unless they wanted to pay for the high tariffs). Then in 1750 parliament ordered that the Colonies couldn’t manufacture Iron products (so we would have to buy them from Britain).

http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_1741502191_6/History_of_Colonial_America.html

The Navigation Acts of the 17th century allowed colonists only to produce agricultural goods and raw materials. Thus the acts reserved for Britain profitable enterprises such as manufacturing goods and providing commercial services including shipping and insurance to British residents. In 1732 Parliament made this ban more specific, prohibiting Americans from marketing colonial-made hats. The following year, Parliament passed the Molasses Act (see Sugar and Molasses Acts), which placed a high tariff on molasses imported into the mainland colonies from the West Indies. These taxes discouraged colonists living in port cities from distilling their own rum because local distillers competed with British rum producers. Then in 1750, Parliament extended the ban on colonial manufactures to iron products such as plows, axes, and skillets.[/i']

 

You ask for it...

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Hmmm. I see we are casually missing out the part where the British declared Slavery illegal, and American landowners decided to rebel rather than accept the loss of profits. I don't think that was an example of Englands[/i'] greed.

Wait a minute, that was after the revoltion.

In 1805 the House of Commons passed a bill that made it unlawful for any British subject to capture and transport slaves' date=' but the measure was blocked by the [/font']House of Lords.

 

In February 1806, Lord Grenville formed a Whig administration. Grenville and his Foreign Secretary, Charles Fox, were strong opponents of the slave trade. Fox and William Wilberforce led the campaign in the House of Commons, whereas Grenville, had the task of persuading the House of Lords to accept the measure.

 

Greenville made a passionate speech where he argued that the trade was "contrary to the principles of justice, humanity and sound policy" and criticised fellow members for "not having abolished the trade long ago". When the vote was taken the Abolition of the Slave Trade bill was passed in the House of Lords by 41 votes to 20. In the House of Commons it was carried by 114 to 15 and it become law on 25th March, 1807.

And if I'm not mistaken The U.S. official made a law involving slavery first, although all it did was outlaw parts of it (like importation, and involvement in international trade), America took the step first a year before Britain passed there law, 31 years after the Revolution.

Now I have to find some linkage I suppose...

In 1806[/b'] the United States passed legislation that banned the importation of slaves, but not the internal slave trade, and the involvement in the international slave trade or the outfitting of ships for that trade by U.S. citizens.

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I can't remember where i heard this from but i think it pretty much sums it up: "The difference between generals and terrorists is the difference between winners and losers."

 

I think as a rule, the Americans were fighting and killing British soldiers, not bombing and beheading civilians. Americans did wipe out Indian civilians though.

 

If you are saying the British were terrorists, killing civilians around the globe, you may have a point.

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If you are saying the British were terrorists, killing civilians around the globe, you may have a point.

When was this?

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Wait a minute, that was after [/i']the revoltion.

No, you picked the wrong law, banning the slave trade was after slavery became illegal in the UK. The slave trade was the route from Africa, with slaves, to the West Indies and United States, where they were sold, to Liverpool with cotton from the West Indies and the US. It was very profitable for merchants, and it took extreme measures from the English Parliament to put a stop to it (the slavery part didn't happen in English waters, so it was hard to stop).

 

_1523100_atlantic_slave_trade2_300.gif

 

And if I'm not mistaken The U.S. official made a law involving slavery first' date=' [/i']although all it did was outlaw parts of it (like importation, and involvement in international trade), America took the step first a year before Britain passed there law, 31 years after the Revolution.

Now I have to find some linkage I suppose...

 

There was no law passed to abolish slavery in Britain, but it became illegal in 1772 (note, that is 4 years before the war of independence, and therefore a valid timeline for a contribution factor). What happened was a runaway slave came before Lord Chief Justice Lord Mansfield, who ruled that the Magna Carta prohibited the act of Slavery under English Law. The slave was called James Somerset, and this became known as the Somerset ruling. Interestingly the slave belonged not to a Englishman, but to Boston customs official in North America named Charles Stewart: -

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/pathways/blackhistory/rights/slave_free.htm

 

This meant not only was it deemed against the law, but it always had been. It also meant that England was ruling on the affairs of officals in the Americas. This angered a great number officals, mostly the ones who owned slaves.

 

In England slavery was not common and the law did not change things much, but in the colonies where most of the manual labour was slave based it represented a significant threat to profits. As soon as the law was passed in England, it was only a matter of time until parliament ruled it to apply to the colonies. Sure enough, by November the Americas had begun steps to declare independence in the second Committee of Correspondence, which would prevent the American public officials (including the court system and the ruling on Slavery) coming under direct control of the Crown. This would ensure public officals (like Charles Stewart) could keep their slaves: -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Committees_of_Correspondence

 

In all honesty, neither the English or the Americans had the moral high ground. It would be incorrect to paint a picture that either side was motivated by a higher ideal. Both were motivated by profit, the Americans maybe a little more so than the English (it is the pioneer spirit after all, they went to America to make their fortune). It was much later on that America has the good fortune to find men with enough backbone to create a country based on an ideal, and not a profit.

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Ok' date=' I'll look for some links.

 

You ask for it...[/quote']

References, not links.

 

You know - citations from actual historians who can explain how the evidence leads them to their conclusions, rather than just someone parrotting the same conclusions as you.

 

Not that I'm saying you're wrong. It just seems prudent.

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There was no law passed to abolish slavery in Britain, but it became illegal in 1772 (note, that is 4 years before the war of independence, and therefore a valid timeline for a contribution factor). What happened was a runaway slave came before Lord Chief Justice Lord Mansfield, who ruled that the Magna Carta prohibited the act of Slavery under English Law. The slave was called James Somerset, and this became known as the Somerset ruling. Interestingly the slave belonged not to a Englishman, but to Boston customs official in North America named Charles Stewart: -

I stand corrected.

You know - citations from actual historians who can explain how the evidence leads them to their conclusions, rather than just someone parrotting the same conclusions as you.

You mean quotes from historians who's conclusions support mine?

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You mean quotes from historians who's conclusions support mine?

It doesn't really matter if they support you or not - the conclusion on its own is not much good to anyone when we are trying to establish why the events happened the way they did.

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I'm not sure I've come across an approach where historic theories have to be supported by historians to be valid. The normal method is to reference evidence, primary (eye witness) secondary (related account of events) circumstantial (accounts of the time, not from the time). This tends to be more effective than relying on historians accounts, or referencing other historians, as it demonstrates things more clearly.

 

The theory is that primary evidence should overrule any historians description of events, because a historian can only have an opinion on events and not direct experience. Notable exceptions are historians like Borman, who witnessed the events they describe.

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Whatever. I am trying to get across the point that backing up "Here is what I say happened" with "here is what Microsoft Encarta says happened" is not the way forward.

 

Do you disagree?

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Probably. I'd probably not accept Microsoft Encarta as a good source, but it's good enough until something better is presented.

 

I have a long standing opinion that decisions on what constitutes historical fact are based more on the eloquence of the Historian than they are on actual evidence. Decisions made on interpretations and reinterpretations of history bring an inherent instability to the term 'historical fact'.

 

All of history is rather pragmatically passed on via word of mouth, which is a form that lends itself to the eloquent rather than the factually correct. Even with copious references a historian can be basing a theory on utter horseshit, safe in the knowledge that few people will fully check the references. If the references are wrong, they simply apologise and reference something else.

 

Nothing outside of living memory can really be known to have happened in a particular way. As conspiracy theorist have proven, almost any idea can be supported with references if nobody can prove what happened beyond dispute. For instance, I'm sure it would only take a days work to chuck in supporting references for these two contradicting ideas on the War of Independence: -

 

http://www.illuminati-news.com/antimasons.htm

http://www.thetruthseeker.co.uk/article.asp?ID=1885

 

All that is to say History is a true academic pastime, and it's probably best to treat idle amateur discussions on historical subjects as academic. It's not as if anyone is going to take us seriously, anyway :P

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So no one can ever know how much of the population of the Colonies was English, or if the Navigation acts, or even if Parliment even existed because we can't test it and can't see it.

 

That sucks :P

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I'm sure you can imagine what if would feel like to be taxed and only have "virtual representation" meaning the people who represent you in parlament don't even have to be from the Colonies to represent the Colonies. They could be anyone.

 

 

I know one of the huge battlecries of the Americans during the revolultionary period was taxation w/out representation, but I personaly feel that was a bit disengenuous. There're some historians and texts which indicate that the Americans weren't really in the mindset to pay any taxes at all, whether they had representation or not. Even that if they had representation, they would most likely have tried to vote it down.

 

However, a problem that I think people of the time realized was that they woudl have had little chance to strike down the tax measures anyway. People were refusing to pay taxes, such as the Stamp Tax, but even if they had representation, they would likely pay it anyway.

 

As someone mentioned above, AMericans didn't like the fact that the mother goose came back to take care of her young. THey had been left alone in the nest for so long, that they resented any authority from above, while the British felt it was necessary to tax due to the costs spent in North America supposedly "defending" Americans, or so my texts say.

 

The entire idea of taxation leads to some interesting conclusions when you relate it to slavery. Many Americans concluded that they were slaves---more specifically, the most abject form of slaves. They kept complaining about paying taxes, comparing themselves to those in bondage, yet they willingly put their fellow man into slavery and thought nothing of it. Poor them for having to pay taxes. Very hypocritical.

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It is hypocritical, but it also makes almost magically perfect sense.

 

To put it another way, they went to a lot of effort to convince each other that a strong central government was a bad thing, and then promptly turned around and created.... a strong central government. That conundrum is often referred to by the Founding Fathers as "the great dilemma" or the "central issue", and how that dilemma was to be resolved was one of the central questions of the republican experiment. It was, after all, something that had arguably never been done before on that scale. As John Adams put it, "The lawgivers of antiquity... legislated for single cities.... But who can legislate for 20 or 30 states, each of which is greater than Greece or Rome at those times?" Even worse, those examples (Greece and Rome) were hardly encouraging, given their outcomes.

 

It's important to also keep in mind that because of America that very dilemma, during the 19th century, also became the central dilemma of the entire western world, as more and more nations began to overthrow authoritarian rule and follow the path the early Americans (rightly or wrongly, with high vision or low greed) had blazed.

 

So if Americans were being hypocrits... well... they eventually had a lot of company. :)

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I have a long standing opinion that decisions on what constitutes historical fact are based more on the eloquence of the Historian than they are on actual evidence. Decisions made on interpretations and reinterpretations of history bring an inherent instability to the term 'historical fact'.

I ask you if you disagree with my previously stated position, and you respond "probably" (which I take to mean "yes", seeing as the reply goes on), despite the fact that you yourself stated that the conventional practice is to refer to evidence.

You then proceed to talk about seeing the diametric opposite of source reconciliation as being more important. Stop being inconsistent.

 

Even with copious references a historian can be basing a theory on utter horseshit, safe in the knowledge that few people will fully check the references.

(...And that's not unique to historians.)

 

Not really sure how it's relevant to the case in hand, given the circumstances that led to this discussion.

The idea that historians 'might use rubbish references' is not a reason to expect no supporting evidence for any given claim, no matter how you dress up the argument.

 

 

Nothing outside of living memory can really be known to have happened in a particular way. As conspiracy theorist have proven, almost any idea can be supported with references if nobody can prove what happened beyond dispute.

Which, one might reasonably expect, might lead to situations where - while discussing historical events - the provider of a claim is asked for reliable evidence.

 

 

it's probably best to treat idle amateur discussions on historical subjects as academic

I rather thought I was.

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I ask you if you disagree with my previously stated position, and you respond "probably" (which I take to mean "yes", seeing as the reply goes on), despite the fact that you yourself stated that the conventional practice is to refer to evidence.

Take it as meaning 'probably', because it's the word I used to describe it. It was a nice way of saying 'I don't think your approach is appropriate'.

 

You then proceed to talk about seeing the diametric opposite of source reconciliation as being more important. Stop being inconsistent.

How I choose to continue my posts is not up for critique when it fall inside the forum rules. You like to pick argument when anyone disagrees with your opinion, which is your problem and not mine. I flatly refuse to enter into this sort of childish arena with you, on the forum or in real life. If you don't agree with me, fine, suck it up and move on or continue in concentric semantic arguments until you disappear up your own arse. I'm not trying to steal your power, or undermine the hallow opinion you spew forth, but in all honesty I am not changing my opinions simply because you take issue with them.

 

Not really sure how it's relevant to the case in hand, given the circumstances that led to this discussion. The idea that historians 'might use rubbish references' is not a reason to expect no supporting evidence for any given claim, no matter how you dress up the argument.

I'm not making a damn argument. I'm presenting my viewpoint. You are the one arguing about this, I don't think anyone else cares. My view is that there is no testable or tangible evidence in academic history, which makes referencing somewhat moot.

 

Which, one might reasonably expect, might lead to situations where - while discussing historical events - the provider of a claim is asked for reliable evidence.

It may, but this is not a fourm for historical debate. It's the idle musings of a bunch of people the majority of which have only have a passing contact with the processes involoved during academic Historical Research.

I rather thought I was.

And yet, you are taking it oh-so-seriously. By all means, carry on picking apart everything I've written, but don't expect to gain any kudos from me or anyone else. You are being offensive, arrogant, defensive and rude. I don't like it. I know full well you'll take offense at this, and somehow it will be my fault for not acceding to your opinion, but I'm damn tired of this shit.

 

You can lord it over the forum all you like, I'm not coming back, I'm dog tired of your attitude. Even though I'll miss reading the comments of other members, it's not worth it. You need to have a word with yourself, and sort your attitude out.

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Take it as meaning 'probably', because it's the word I used to describe it. It was a nice way of saying 'I don't think your approach is appropriate'.

Which seems to be repetition of what I was replying to.

 

I asked you if you agree or disagree. Given your last post, responding with "probably" was blatant mine-laying.

 

 

How I choose to continue my posts is not up for critique when it fall inside the forum rules. You like to pick argument when anyone disagrees with your opinion, which is your problem and not mine. I flatly refuse to enter into this sort of childish arena with you, on the forum or in real life. If you don't agree with me, fine, suck it up and move on or continue in concentric semantic arguments until you disappear up your own arse. I'm not trying to steal your power, or undermine the hallow opinion you spew forth, but in all honesty I am not changing my opinions simply because you take issue with them.

I'm not asking you to change your opinions; I'm asking you to only respond to me with pertinent points.

I know this topic is one of your favourite bug-bears, but I'd rather not have you treating me as a sounding board just because I'm involved in a vaguely related discussion with somebody else.

 

 

I'm not making a damn argument. I'm presenting my viewpoint. You are the one arguing about this, I don't think anyone else cares. My view is that there is no testable or tangible evidence in academic history, which makes referencing somewhat moot.

Like I said above, fair enough. I don't see any part of my post which could possibly be interpreted as "your view is wrong". My questions and pauses all relate to your posts' relevance to mine.

 

I understand you feel your opinion will help. I understand that you have your own views on Demosthenes' position. What I am asking you to do is show me why I should consider the two things to be linked. It's a simple request, and if you don't like the way it is being presented I'm perfectly open to polite comments to that effect.

 

It seems to me that you have seen an exchange that bears some resemblance to one of your favourite argument topics (please don't insult my intelligence by denying that it is, because you have bitched about it to me at length in the recent past), injected your opinion into the discussion, and are baulking now that difficult questions have been asked.

 

 

It may, but this is not a fourm for historical debate. It's the idle musings of a bunch of people the majority of which have only have a passing contact with the processes involoved during academic Historical Research.

I really don't see what that has to do with the price of fish. Demosthenes' ability to answer questions does not change depending on what forum he posts in.

 

 

And yet, you are taking it oh-so-seriously. By all means, carry on picking apart everything I've written, but don't expect to gain any kudos from me or anyone else. You are being offensive, arrogant, defensive and rude.

I really don't think that I am being "offensive, arrogant [or] rude", actually. I have not said anything offensive or rude, and I am hardly likely to be arrogant while entrenched in enquiry mode.

 

You know full well you are bringing in your own issues from RL, and I dare say probably attributing motives to my posts that come from your head, rather than the content I wrote. You also know damned well that emotive content should never be inferred from plain text.

 

If you think I am being defensive, it might have something to do with your tendency to lambast me with irrelevant lines of enquiry when I express a disagreeable opinion on a topic you have an interest in (and not just me, you do it to everyone). Example: the skiing conversation the other night.

 

 

I don't like it. I know full well you'll take offense at this, and somehow it will be my fault for not acceding to your opinion, but I'm damn tired of this shit.

I don't take offence Phil, because I understand where this is all coming from.

 

 

You can lord it over the forum all you like, I'm not coming back, I'm dog tired of your attitude. Even though I'll miss reading the comments of other members, it's not worth it. You need to have a word with yourself, and sort your attitude out.

Yes, it's true - I am the source of all your problems. And personal accountability is as mythical as the ignore button. Stop being a child. You're almost thirty.

 

If you really intend to leave just over this (which is bollocks anyway, given your long-lived contempt for half the members, and the way we do things here), then I'm sorry you can't see past your own pride.

 

 

 

Apologies for the off-topic ranting, everyone.

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I've thought about the logic regarding history, where we really can't know anything unless it is in our own memories. I find this confusing and... weird. If I can't know what happened in the past, how can I know that anything happens I don't see? How can I know that there really are 7 continents or even if anything exists outside of my house when I'm at home? I think that science is precise that when compared to other sects of academia it seems so imperfect and so imprecise that it might as well just all be disregarded. Well, some of us have to push past that, except the frailties, and try.

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