174 online
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 42 Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
Exclusive to OpEd News:
OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 3/20/13

Sequestration Abomination

By       (Page 1 of 1 pages)   5 comments
Follow Me on Twitter     Message William Bike
Become a Fan
  (2 fans)

President Harry Truman once said, "The only thing new in the world is the history you don't know."

Clearly, President Barack Obama and Congress didn't know their history concerning the "Tariff of Abominations"--the 1828 version of sequestration.

Both the 1828 tariff and sequestration were ladled with provisions that each side thought would make the other side balk. Each side's pols thought they were being clever--that they loaded up the proviso with attributes would make them look good and the other guys look bad, and that the proposal would never be enacted

They were wrong in 1828, and they were wrong in 2013. If today's politicians had any historical savvy, they would have known that sequestration, like the Tariff of 1828, could take on a momentum of its own that they would be powerless to stop.

Democratic supporters of Andrew Jackson, who was running for President in 1828, cooked up the tariff idea as what they thought was a clever political ploy--much as the Obama White House cooked up sequestration as their own political ploy.

Candidate Andrew Jackson--the impetus behind the .Tariff of Abominations..
Candidate Andrew Jackson--the impetus behind the .Tariff of Abominations..
(Image by Library of Congress)
  Details   DMCA

Candidate Andrew Jackson--the impetus behind the .Tariff of Abominations.. by Library of Congress
The Jacksonians introduced a tariff bill that would protect domestic manufacturers from imported goods, but that also included high duties on raw materials manufacturers needed. They believed the latter part of the bill would turn manufacturers against it, and Congressmen from the manufacturing states of the North would join free market Southern Congressmen in defeating it. Jackson would then look like a champion of protection in the North, and of the free market in the South.

Except, to everyone's surprise, the bill passed--creating the highest tariff the United States ever had enacted and causing people to call it the Tariff of Abominations.

As Senator Daniel Webster said of the tariff, "Its enemies spiced it with whatever they thought would render it distasteful; its friends took it, drugged as it was."

Fast forward to 2011. The White House thought it was being clever to ladle the sequestration bill with provisions such as cuts to defense that it thought would force Republicans to compromise.

In other words, the Obama White House spiced sequestration with whatever they thought would render it distasteful. Yet Republicans took it, drugged as it was.

The Jacksonians might have figured that Northern manufacturers loved protection so much that the bill could pass; that's what happened, but the Jacksonians didn't foresee it. The White House might have figured that Republicans loved cutting government spending and services so much that sequestration would actually go into effect; that's what happened, but the Obama Administration didn't foresee it.

The tariff didn't hurt Jackson's presidential run; as an early practitioner of some of the political tactics I describe in my book Winning Political Campaigns: A Comprehensive Guide to Electoral Success, he won the election of 1828 easily.

Yet, the Tariff of Abominations led to the South coming up with the doctrine of nullification--the theory that a state could nullify a federal law it didn't like. Nullification was one of the philosophical ideas that led to the Civil War.

One can only hope that the results of the sequestration abomination will not be as dire.

Rate It | View Ratings

William Bike Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

William S. Bike is Senior Vice President of ANB Communications, a communications consulting and political consulting firm based in Chicago. Bike has worked in journalism, public relations, and politics since 1979 and is the former Communications (more...)
Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEd News Newsletter
   (Opens new browser window)

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Another National Run in Sarah Palin's Future?

Trump Like Reagan; That's Why He Can Win GOP Nomination

Ending the draft helped create the horror of endless war

Relax, Democrats: Primaries Working the Way They Should

Artificial vs. Natural Turf Battle Takes the Field in Chicago

Marianne Williamson looking to make 2020 'do-over' election like 1980

To View Comments or Join the Conversation:

Tell A Friend