Thursday, March 1, 2012

American Lion By Jon Meacham

Andrew Jackson "old hickory" was an amazing man.  In addition to being a war hero is one of the  most famous battles of all times (Battle of New Orleans), he was also a Fraternal Brother.  He was our seventh President of these united states.  During his term of 1828, his Vice President was John C. Calhoun and in 1832, his VP was Marten Van Buren.  His wife Rachel Jackson died just before the inauguration of Jackson. The book covers the "scandal" of that time regarding Rachel's first husband (Lewis Robards) of which Rachel was still married to when her and Andrew Jackson married. The attacks on Rachel, his late wife by his political adversaries well passed the elections.  Jackson suffered greatly with the loss of Rachel. 

Jackson's controversy did not end there.  The book covers how Mr. Jackson elevated the executive branch's power unconstitutionally which  Abraham Lincoln used as a justification to usurp the Constitution and declare a war against a group of states that no longer agreed with how the Central Government was doing things.  One thing is a fact, he did do away with the central bank of these united states.
"Gentlemen, I have had men watching you for a long time and I am convinced that you have used the funds of the bank to speculate in the breadstuffs of the country. When you won, you divided the profits amongst you, and when you lost, you charged it to the bank. You tell me that if I take the deposits from the bank and annul its charter, I shall ruin ten thousand families. That may be true gentlemen, but that is your sin! Should I let you go on, you will ruin fifty thousand families, and that would be my sin! You are a den of vipers and thieves."

Jackson did not agree that nullification was allowed or proper.  I disagree with him, however he stood his ground when it came to this particular subject.  

In general, the book is exceptionally well written.  The book is engaging and if you enjoy biographies, you will not be disappointed with this gem.  

Ironically although Jackson despised the central bank and disagreed with what it was doing, today we have Jackson's face on a "Federal" "Reserve" note.

Paperback: 512 pages
Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks; Reprint edition (April 30, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0812973461
ISBN-13: 978-0812973464

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