‘Grover Norquist is a creature of the 19th century, the golden age of the 'Robber Barons'. His ideal presidential administration was William McKinley's, devoted to the prosperity of the Robber Barons, and in turn, complete subservience of the lower and middle classes to the wealthy ruling class.
‘Yes, the McKinley era, absent the protectionism,’ he agrees, is the goal. "You're looking at the history of the country for the first 120 years, up until Teddy Roosevelt, when the socialists took over. The income tax, the death tax, regulation, all that." -- Grover Norquist
“At the heart of the street culture is an emphasis on respect, toughness, retribution, and ultimately, violence. Anderson suggested that the street culture emphasizes maintaining the respect of others, toughness, and exacting retribution when someone disrespects you through the use of violence.” This code is eerily similar to Hackett Fischer’s description of Andrew Jackson, the president who was taught to go outside the rule of law and settle things hisself:"
“Backcountry courts tended to punish property crimes with the utmost severity, but to be very lenient with crimes of personal violence. In Cumberland County, Virginia, during the eighteenth century, a court administered the following punishments: for hog stealing, death by hanging; for scolding, five shilling fine; for the rape of an eleven-year-old girl, one shilling fine. This structure of values continued for many generations in the backcountry. Historian Edward Ayers finds that in the southern upcountry during the nineteenth century, county courts “treated property offenders much more harshly than those accused of violence.”
Life was cheap; property was expensive....
“That the culture of honor appears to be such a robust predictor of school violence supports the hypothesis that school violence might be partially a product of long-term or recent experiences of social marginalization, humiliation, rejection, or bullying (Leary et al., 2003; Newman et al., 2005), all of which represent honor threats with special significance to people (particularly males) living in culture-of-honor states.
It’s also at the heart of what Yale sociologist Elijah Anderson sees in the code of the streets:
“At the heart of the street culture is an emphasis on respect, toughness, retribution, and ultimately, violence. Anderson suggested that the street culture emphasizes maintaining the respect of others, toughness, and exacting retribution when someone disrespects you through the use of violence.” This code is eerily similar to Hackett Fischer’s description of Andrew Jackson, the president who was taught to go outside the rule of law and settle things hisself:
The classical example of this attitude towards violence was Andrew Jackson. A friend who knew him well for forty years said “no man knew better than Andrew Jackson when to get into a passion and when not.” James Parton commented that Jackson’s anger was “a Scotch-Irish anger. It was fierce, but never had any ill effect upon his purposes; on the contrary, he made it serve him, sometimes, by seeming to be much more angry than he was; a way with others of his race.
But Jackson was brilliant and self-controlled; not all his contemporaries were: “Jackson’s strategy of controlled anger worked because most rage was genuine in this culture. Violence often consisted of blind, unthinking acts of savagery by men and women who were unable to control their own feelings.” Alcohol abuse was frequent, and children started drinking early. “In poorer families,” Wyatt-Brown writes, “a dram of whiskey was the early antebellum schoolboy’s fare for breakfast. Brantley York, a North Carolinian yeoman’s son, seldom left for school, he recalled, without first having a stiff glass.”
Randolph Roth takes issue with the culture of honor thesis in his longitudinal study American Homicide:
He has determined that four factors correlate with the homicide rate: faith that government is stable and capable of enforcing just laws; trust in the integrity of legitimately elected officials; solidarity among social groups based on race, religion, or political affiliation; and confidence that the social hierarchy allows for respect to be earned without recourse to violence. When and where people hold these sentiments, the homicide rate is low; when and where they don’t, it’s high.
But they are not necessarily contradictory. The mistrust of legal and governmental means of recourse, that no man should “sue anybody for slander, assault, and battery,” is similar to what Robert Sampson, in his study of Chicago neighborhood violence, calls “legal cynicism”:
A distinction between the tolerance of deviance and cynicism about the applicability of law. One can be highly intolerant of crime, but live in a disadvantaged context bereft of legal sanctions and perceived justice. In fact, we suggest that this is exactly the sort of context found in many ghetto-poverty areas of our large cities where lower-income minorities are disproportionately concentrated. Crime there is usually high, but that does not imply, nor is there consistent evidence, that African American residents are tolerant of crime.
Crime was also not tolerated in the rural south of the 19th century; violence as a response to crime, or to pre-empt crime, was. This belief continued well into the 20th century, as the fear of vigilante justice, due to the overwhelmingly large black population, created both vigilante justice in the form of the Klan, which evolved into de facto vigilante justice from law enforcement itself, further undermining faith in just laws and a stable government: “After the Civil War, [slave patrols] seamlessly morphed into the Ku Klux Klan, the Red Shirts and other extra-legal organizations with the same purpose: to keep the black population cowed and under control. Fear of the black population is also why Southern society long accepted brutality in law enforcement to a greater degree than other parts of the country did.”