"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
Fisher Ames, in 1802, on his vision for a new Federalist newspaper, the New-England Palladium:
"Wit and satire should flash like the electrical fire, but the Palladium should be fastitiously polite and well-bred. It should whip Jacobins as a gentleman would a chimney-sweeper, at arm's length, and keeping aloof from his soot."
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John Adams, "Atlas of American Independence," and in Michael Moore's view, the moral equivalent of a Fallujah cutthroat, was invoked at last week's convention by Dems who might have seen themselves in Adams' description of the idealistic sons of Dr. Priestley:
[T]hey will do no good in America, untill they are undeceived. They are blinded by Ignorance or Error: blinded beyond the most stupid and besotted of our American Jacobins, entre nous. They are young however and will be corrected by Experience.
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Steve M. wonders: Has the Massachusetts Federalists' website been updated more recently than the Mass. GOP's? It's an open question which party is more moribund.
The Federalist gentlemen of the old school, accustomed to standing for office, not running, did, indeed, have a difficult time adjusting to Jeffersonian electioneering and its fish-fries, ox-roasts and turtle dinners, writes historian David Hackett Fischer in The Revolution of American Conservatism: The Federalist Party in the Era of Jeffersonian Democracy.
"It is difficult at this late date to recover the flavor of political barbecues in the early Republic," Fischer writes. "'Electioneering Cookery' was itself a fine art…
"The primary purpose of a barbecue or a fish feast or a turtle dinner was not merely to bribe the voters with a good meal and a gay afternoon, but to expose them to political propaganda. Before, during, and after the dinner, the assembled citizenry were forced to bear, with varying degrees of patience, an astonishing volume of 'stump' oratory.
"The Federalists appear to have had difficulty mastering the strange art of 'forensic degladiation,' as one of them called it…"
The flavor of old-time stump speaking is conveyed by a spectator's account of an oration delivered by the young Federalist John Carlyle Herbert of Anne Arundel County, Maryland, at a "splendid and profuse" barbecue:
Immediately after dinner, Mr. John C. Herbert rose and addressed the people, in an animated speech, teeming with the most splendid declamation and poignant invective against the character of general Samuel Smith. His imagination was vivid, his style chaste and nervous, and his action and manner graceful and fascinating. He drew a glowing and highly finished picture of the private and political character of the General and delineated each feature with the most accurate precision. He saw "his corruption and venality through the darkness beam, withdrew the veil, and gave them light in form so hideous, that even his basest friends affrighted tremble," tracing him step by step, well ripened to that maturity of depravity after which the worst examples cease to be contagious."…His speech was received with every mark of approbation by the people; they returned repeated huzzas.
"Try as they might, the young Federalists were probably never able to equal in volume the electioneering of their opponents," Fischer observes. "On the same day that John C. Herbert spoke to a Federalist gathering in Maryland, Jeffersonians sponsored no fewer than nine barbecues in the same county!"