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 Posted: Tue May 12th, 2009 03:52 pm
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bschulte
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All, I have put together a poll over at TOCWOC asking readers, What Caused the Civil War?, and allowing a person up to three choices. Feel free to cast your own vote and let others know. I'm curious to see what kind of results we get.



 Posted: Tue May 12th, 2009 05:19 pm
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HankC
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I say it was latitude...the closer to the equator the more likely a state is to secede...


HankC



 Posted: Tue May 12th, 2009 05:22 pm
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bschulte
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HankC wrote: I say it was latitude...the closer to the equator the more likely a state is to secede...


HankC

:D That's about the simplest explanation I've heard yet!



 Posted: Tue May 12th, 2009 05:49 pm
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susansweet3
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I like this explanation .  Southern California was full of supporters for the Confederacy as was Southern Arizona and Southern New Mexico Territories. 

Actually Southern Arizona and Southern New Mexico Territory was formed into the Confederate Territory of New Mexico with headquarters in Tucson for a while.  Fits with Hanks closer to the equator theroy . 



 Posted: Tue May 12th, 2009 05:55 pm
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HankC
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I need simple… If not, I’d probably say something like :

Fill a bowl with 31 marbles. Color 17 of them, say, red, and 14 of them, say, gray.

Stir the bowl well, close your eyes and choose 11.

What do you think the chances are of all 11 being gray?

This is a problem of probability, specifically combinations where order is not important and repetition is not allowed (e.g. the marble named 'Virginia' can be chosen, at most, once).

First we need to know how many possible combinations of 11 items out of the 31.

The equation for this is 31!/(11! * 20!) where n! = n*n-1*n-2*n-3*…*2*1 (called n factorial, so 6! = 5*4*3*2*1 = 120). We see that these numbers can get big in a hurry.

Anyway, 31!/(11! * 20!) = 84,672,315 . That’s a lot of possibilities!

Then we need to figure how many combinations of 11 we can get from just the 14 gray marbles. This equation is 14!/(11! * 3!) or 364. Here, try it yourself (14*13*12*11*10*9*8*7*6*5*4*3*2*1)/((11*10*9*8*7*6*5*4*3*2*1)*(3*2*1)) = 364. Okay, well, take my word for it ;)

So if we predict the chances of picking 11 gray marbles out of our bowl of 31 total marbles, we’ll divide 364 by 84,672,315 and get .0000043 or .00043 % (4 chances in a million) chance of picking 11 gray marbles purely by chance.

Given such a small probability, we’d then have to find some dependent variable among the gray marbles that causes them to, more or less, increase the chance of being picked once one or more is picked. Finding this dependency is left to the reader ;)



 Posted: Tue May 12th, 2009 11:01 pm
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susansweet3
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Thanks Hank , I think.



 Posted: Wed May 13th, 2009 01:17 am
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CleburneFan
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Hank, say what?:?



 Posted: Wed May 13th, 2009 02:52 am
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barrydancer
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Tacos.



 Posted: Wed May 13th, 2009 02:47 pm
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CleburneFan
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barrydancer wrote: Tacos.
In other words, the Civil War was eventually fought because the Mexcian/American War was fought?



 Posted: Wed May 13th, 2009 03:10 pm
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barrydancer
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CleburneFan wrote: In other words, the Civil War was eventually fought because the Mexcian/American War was fought?
Nope.  The South was closer to those yummy, yummy tacos, and the North wanted easier access to them.  The South seceded to deny needed foodstuffs to the growing Northern population.



 Posted: Wed May 13th, 2009 03:45 pm
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ole
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Terminal sectionalism.

Alternative: Smart*** pundits espousing wild-eyed theories about planters growing surly in the southern heat and playing dog-in-the-manger by depriving the north of tacos.

;)



 Posted: Wed May 13th, 2009 06:56 pm
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Henry
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Schulte- I'd linked to your blogsite in the wee hours of the morning and attempted to produce data for you in the form of poll results. The last selection of the ten posed does not function. Other. Other has a lot to do with the period events. Tacos?....No, Taxes.



 Posted: Wed May 13th, 2009 07:03 pm
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bschulte
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Henry wrote: Schulte- I'd linked to your blogsite in the wee hours of the morning and attempted to produce data for you in the form of poll results. The last selection of the ten posed does not function. Other. Other has a lot to do with the period events. Tacos?....No, Taxes.
Henry,

Use the poll in the sidebar.  For reasons as yet unknown to me, the version of the poll embedded into the post does not allow guests to vote.



 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 03:20 am
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Henry
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Schulte- The sidebar poll works.

Regarding food as an issue in the conflict, I do not believe the North felt a loss in Southern bid for independence. Northern and Western agriculture were sufficient to feed the civilian population and the rapidly growing military.
One of the reasons for the failure of the Confederacy, however, was the inability of the South to provide adequate nutrition. Bad crops in 1863 and 1864 led to the decline, along with the failure to gain support from Europe.

See The Journals of Josiah Gorgas for reference to the poor nutrition options of the Confederacy. Written by a man with a family to feed, one of whom became the Surgeon General of the United States.



 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 04:21 pm
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CleburneFan
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Henry wrote: Schulte- The sidebar poll works.

One of the reasons for the failure of the Confederacy, however, was the inability of the South to provide adequate nutrition. Bad crops in 1863 and 1864 led to the decline, along with the failure to gain support from Europe.



Aslo, a substantial amount of crop land in the South, especially the deep South, was dedicated to inedible cash crops such as King Cotton and tobacco.

Another reason crops yields were down is that the men responsible for running farms and plantations were off to the war. The women had to manage slaves, not always successfully. Slaves left in droves to follow Union columns as the war wore on, reducing manpower on the plantations. Women who had no slaves found it difficult or impossible to keep their farms going as successfully as their husbands, sons and brothers had.

Another problem, especially in Virginia, but other Confederate states too, was that as armies of either side passed, they helped themselves liberally to what was being grown to eat and to what had been prepared or stored away. They stole livestock, knocked down fences, tramped through corn fields, stripped trees bare of fruit.

Fortunately for the North, other than notable exceptions such as Gettysburg, farms were not decimated by the ravages of war.

Last edited on Thu May 14th, 2009 04:21 pm by CleburneFan



 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 05:26 pm
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ole
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I'm thinking we're not answering Brett's original question: What caused the Civil War. All welcone frivolity aside, there is only one answer: Slavery. Sectionalism. Sectional resentment. Tariffs. State's rights, and all of that can be found to be based on slavery. Without that, there is no Civil War.



 Posted: Thu May 14th, 2009 11:56 pm
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CleburneFan
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Ole, agreed, 100%.



 Posted: Tue May 19th, 2009 04:59 pm
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borderuffian
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"Slavery"

I am sure those Yankee millionaires -the ones who paid for the war- were greatly distressed about the condition of the slave.

Without Yankee greed and avarice, there would have been no war.



 Posted: Tue May 19th, 2009 05:22 pm
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TimK
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Without slavery, there would have been no war.



 Posted: Tue May 19th, 2009 06:33 pm
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19bama46
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It was yankee Greed...

No it was slavery...

which came first, the chicken or the egg...

we are back to no single cause MHO...

slavery was involved in every part of the runup to the war, but so were lots of other things... there is not always a simple answer to some simple questions



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