Sunday, December 21, 2014

Throckmorton on the David Barton Lawsuit Settlement

Here. A taste:
It is a shame that the Texas candidates focused on those obscure speeches when there were so many other issues on which to focus.

More curious is that Barton has used the judgment to go after others. I certainly understand why he went after Bob Barr and I defended Barton against Barr’s claims of antiSemitism.

Barton critics Rob Boston and Chris Rodda are mentioned. However, his evangelical critics (e.g., John Fea, John Wilsey, me) are not mentioned. The WND article falters by not clearly spelling out that the criticism of Barton’s historical writing has been found flawed by evangelicals as well as those outside the church. If Barton is going to sue all of his critics, then he will be in court more than out of court.

It might be telling who he sues and who he doesn’t.

At risk of a suit, I stand by my book, Getting Jefferson Right, and am glad to defend my work and assessment of Barton’s historical problems. If anything, I might consider an action in his direction, after years of misrepresentations of me and my motives by Barton.


Tom Van Dyke said...

The WND article falters by not clearly spelling out that the criticism of Barton’s historical writing has been found flawed by evangelicals as well as those outside the church.
Not really. A line was crossed, and it cost the miscreants a million dollars. Race-baiting by the left is ruining this country, and Barton did a public service.

The false accusations of racism are separate from the historical factoid war.

Jonathan Rowe said...

Yeah I think one of the dumbest things the anti-Barton folks did was accuse him of being a white supremacist, which I find no evidence of him being.

He wants more African Americans on his side, voting Republican, and helping to shape and otherwise maintain the GOP according to the religious right norms he endorses.

I think he used ludicrous arguments* to achieve that goal, but a racist or white supremacist he is not.

*Bottom line: He connects and equates today's Democratic Party who elected Clinton and Obama and for whom the vast majority of African Americans vote with the Democrats who fought on the losing side of the Civil War while glossing over the history that led to the juxtaposition of political heritages and political parties.

Tom Van Dyke said...

That "juxtaposition" is a left-wing myth. Except for Strom Thurmond, every democratic senator who filibustered the Civil Rights Act on 1964 remained in the Democratic Party, including furure Senate majority leader Robert Byrd and Al Gore's father, Al Gore, Sr.

This is why the left seeks out and attacks the highly vulnerable amateur historian David Barton. They cannot win on the facts.

This race-baiting on Barton was a disgrace, and it's good the bad guys lost for once.

While chatting with Brian Lamb on C-SPAN over the weekend, Rep. Charles B. Rangel, D-New York, dropped a few falsehoods as casually as cigar ash.

His assertion — that the Republican and Democratic parties “changed sides” in the 1960s on civil rights, with white racists leaving the Democratic Party to join the Republicans — has become conventional wisdom. It’s utterly false and should be rebutted at every opportunity.

Jonathan Rowe said...

"Except for Strom Thurmond, every democratic senator who filibustered the Civil Rights Act on 1964 ..."

Is this the proper standard for evaluating the heritage of the conservative white Southern "Dixie-Crats"?

Tom Van Dyke said...

If you're going to spread this lazy left-wing slander on a history blog, please do so with more care.

Tom Van Dyke said...

Gerard Alexander began a thorough debunking of this theme in the Claremont Review of Books several years ago (“The Myth of the Racist Republicans“), and Sean Trende continues the job with a fine column today on RealClearPolitics, “Southern Whites’ Shift to GOP Predates the ’60s.” It’s worth reading the whole thing, but here’s a few highlights:

In truth, the white South began breaking away from the Democrats in the 1920s, as population centers began to develop in what was being called the “New South” . . .

But the big breakthrough, to the extent that there was one, came in 1952. Dwight Eisenhower won 48 percent of the vote there, compared to Adlai Stevenson’s 52 percent. He carried most of the “peripheral South” — Virginia, Tennessee, Texas and Florida — and made inroads in the “Deep South,” almost carrying South Carolina and losing North Carolina and Louisiana by single digits.

Even in what we might call the “Deepest South” — Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi — Eisenhower kept Stevenson under 70 percent, which might not seem like much until you realize that Tom Dewey got 18 percent in Georgia against FDR in 1944, and that this had been an improvement over Herbert Hoover’s 8 percent in 1932.

In 1956, Eisenhower became the first Republican since Reconstruction to win a plurality of the vote in the South, 49.8 percent to 48.9 percent. He once again carried the peripheral South, but also took Louisiana with 53 percent of the vote. He won nearly 40 percent of the vote in Alabama. This is all the more jarring when you realize that the Brown v. Board decision was handed down in the interim, that the administration had appointed the chief justice who wrote the decision, and that the administration had opposed the school board.

Nor can we simply write this off to Eisenhower’s celebrity. The GOP was slowly improving its showings at the congressional level as well. It won a special election to a House seat in west Texas in 1950, and began winning urban congressional districts in Texas, North Carolina, Florida and Virginia with regularity beginning in 1952.

It’s worth going back and re-reading Alexander’s dissection of the academic scholarship on this subject, and especially the conclusion:

The point of all this is not to deny that Richard Nixon may have invited some nasty fellows into his political bed. The point is that the GOP finally became the region’s dominant party in the least racist phase of the South’s entire history, and it got that way by attracting most of its votes from the region’s growing and confident communities—not its declining and fearful ones. The myth’s shrillest proponents are as reluctant to admit this as they are to concede that most Republicans genuinely believe that a color-blind society lies down the road of individual choice and dynamic change, not down the road of state regulation and unequal treatment before the law. The truly tenacious prejudices here are the mythmakers’.

Jonathan Rowe said...

I'm not so much concerned with "tarring" today's Republicans with the heritage of the Dixie Crats as I am with noting today's Democrats shouldn't be tarred with that heritage either.

That's what Barton tried to do.

Tom Van Dyke said...

The "juxtaposition" is a myth, for reasons given. As for Barton trying to convince anyone that today's Democrats are still the party of Bull Connor, if he did it's silly.

However, the hateful demagoguery spread by Charlie Rangel and countless other Democrats such as Vice President Biden

makes Barton quite a petty criminal in the scheme of things.

Jonathan Rowe said...

"As for Barton trying to convince anyone that today's Democrats are still the party of Bull Connor, if he did it's silly."

I remember him tying today's Democrats to Robert E. Lee.

Jonathan Rowe said...

We discussed this before.

Tom Van Dyke said...

The story here is Barton winning $1 million from race-baiting Democrats. Barton's little fairy tales are nothing next to the damage the Democrats are doing.

Art Deco said...

E. Howard Hunt offered many years ago that after his first experience with participating in a defamation suit, you could never convince him to participate in another one (and in Hunt's case, it was not general characterizations at issue, but contentions he was a participant in the Kennedy assassination, something rather more distinct and specific than David Barton tagging Warren Throckmorton as an ally of Jim Wallis).

Still, perhaps there's an attorney who will take Warren Throckmorton's case, on the theory he's defamed until proven broke. WT may find discovery and depositions take him places he does not wish to go.

Art Deco said...

You know, there are four posts on this page alone which contain the character string "Barton" and "Throckmorton". Somehow, I doubt the Throckmorton book is so dense that you need 30 months of discussion to unpack it. Just a thought.

Tom Van Dyke said...

The Throckmorton book seems fine--although I caught him in an inaccuracy himself re the Jefferson Bible. [The Second Coming IS in there!]

Barton screwed up bigtime trying to enlist Jefferson for Christianity or a Christian America. I'd rather take the opposite argument, that the slaveowning hypocrite's blatherings should mostly be ignored.

Warren Throckmorton said...

TVD - What inaccuracy?

We said Jefferson included a future state of rewards and punishments in the Jefferson Bible. From our book:

Jefferson included texts which depicted a future state of rewards and punishments because those matched that belief. In this case, Barton is half right. Jefferson allowed for an afterlife beyond the end of natural life.

Throckmorton, Warren; Coulter, Michael (2012-05-01). Getting Jefferson Right: Fact Checking Claims about Our Third President (Kindle Locations 1890-1891). . Kindle Edition.

Tom Van Dyke said...

Warren, on your blog you screwed up dogging Barton on the Second Coming re the Jefferson Bible. You were flat-out wrong.

If you're going to try to re-litigate this, examine your own archives and find my original objections, to which you had no rebuttal.

It's no big deal. Even the best of historians screw up factoids. My point was that you should reconsider your mercilessness toward Barton [and your other ideological enemies] because you screw up too.

As a matter of fact, I did write about the incident, but left your name out of it because, well, because.

Warren Throckmorton said...

TVD - In your comment above, you talked about our book. We did not omit Jefferson's views on the judgment from our book and I don't believe we did on my blog either.

Given your behavior at my blog, I don't expect you to retract but I want others reading that we did not do what you claim.

Warren Throckmorton said...

This may be the blog post you are referring to.

As you can see I didn't dispute Jefferson's belief in afterlife and judgment. You raised the second coming in a comment but I did not dispute it in the post or the comments.

If you can find someplace I said Jefferson didn't include verses about the second coming, please point out the location. I will of course correct it. I can't find anywhere where I have disputed it.

Tom Van Dyke said...

Warren, you're completely off-base and own me a retraction. I specifically spoke of you, not your e-book with Dr. Coulter.

Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...
The Throckmorton book seems fine--although I caught him in an inaccuracy himself re the Jefferson Bible. [The Second Coming IS in there!]

Warren Throckmorton said...

I am sorry to misunderstand you. My reasoning was that you did not mention my blog, only my book.

In any case, I cannot find a blog post where I was inaccurate about what Jefferson included in his edited Gospels. If you point it out, I will of course correct it.

Anonymous said...

Throckmorton, there is a problem with you. Calling yourself an evangelist and then devoting so much of your time to attacking Christians instead of spreading the gospel.... I think you are a tool of the devil and less a real Christian. All the sites I find quoting you involve attacking Christians.