Thomas DiLorenzo

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Thomas DiLorenzo

Thomas J. DiLorenzo


Thomas J. DiLorenzo (born 1954) is an American economics professor at Loyola College in Maryland. He is an adherent of the Austrian School of Economics, senior faculty member of the Ludwig von Mises Institute, and an affiliated scholar of the League of the South Institute, the research arm of the League of the South and the Abbeville Institute. He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Virginia Tech.


Tom DiLorenzo is also a best-selling author and has authored more than ten books, including: The Real Lincoln: A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War; How Capitalism Saved America: The Untold History of Our Country; From the Pilgrims to the Present; and Lincoln Unmasked: What You're Not Supposed To Know about Dishonest Abe.


Thomas DiLorenzo is perhaps best known as an outspoken critic of President Abraham Lincoln (including big or behemoth government), as well as an acclaimed author and lecturer. DiLorenzo is a breath of fresh air and brings balance and perspective to the oft heard voice of the so-called Lincoln cult or Lincoln lover. DiLorenzo is well known from the halls of Congress to the Civil War buff.


DiLorenzo is an out spoken critic against “big government” and “tyrannical government.” DiLorenzo, however, is a proponent of states’ rights (Tenth Amendment) and Southern secession (a state’s right to secede from the Union). He has also criticized the crediting of the “New Deal” for ending the Great Depression.


DiLorenzo lectures nationally and discusses a variety of subjects, including: President Abraham Lincoln and the US Constitution, Tariffs, Economics, States' Rights, Southern Secession, The American Civil War ("The War For Southern Secession"), The Great Depression, and the Leviathan Government. He is also a frequent speaker at Mises Institute events. For your convenience, best-selling author Thomas J. DiLorenzo's books are listed below. Also, a review and description is included for each book.


Recommended Reading: The Real Lincoln: A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War, by Thomas J. DiLorenzo . Description: It hardly seems possible that there is more to say about someone who has been subjected to such minute scrutiny in thousands of books and articles. Yet, Thomas J. DiLorenzo’s The Real Lincoln manages to raise fresh and morally probing questions, challenging the image of the martyred 16th president that has been fashioned carefully in marble and bronze, sentimentalism and myth. In doing so, DiLorenzo does not follow the lead of M. E. Bradford or other Southern agrarians. Continued below... 

He writes primarily not as a defender of the Old South and its institutions, culture, and traditions, but as a libertarian enemy of the Leviathan state. DiLorenzo holds Lincoln and his war responsible for the triumph of "big government" and the birth of the ubiquitous, suffocating modern U.S. state. He seeks to replace the nation’s memory of Lincoln as the “Great Emancipator” with the record of Lincoln as the “Great Centralizer.”

Recommended Reading: Lincoln Unmasked: What You're Not Supposed to Know About Dishonest Abe, by Thomas J. DiLorenzo. Description: While many view our 16th president as the nation’s greatest president and hero, Tom DiLorenzo, through his scholarly research, exposes the many unconstitutional decisions of Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln Unmasked, a best-seller, reveals that ‘other side’ – the inglorious character – of the nation’s greatest tyrant and totalitarian. A book that is hailed by many and harshly criticized by others, Lincoln Unmasked, nevertheless, is a thought-provoking study and view of Lincoln that was not taught in our public school system.


Recommended Reading: Abraham Lincoln: Friend or Foe of Freedom? by Thomas J. DiLorenzo (Author), Joseph A. Morris (Author). Description: The Heartland Institute hosted its 23rd Anniversary Benefit Dinner on October 25, 2007. Nearly 500 people gathered at the Hilton Chicago Hotel to hear outstanding presentations delivered by two remarkable individuals. Many of us grew up and grew older regarding Abraham Lincoln as one of our greatest presidents. He preserved the Union against the rebels, he freed the slaves, he urged reconciliation during Reconstruction, he was humble and a leader of enormous charisma, and persistent. Continued below…

In recent years, however, others have challenged those assumptions. Yes, he preserved the Union but where in the Constitution does it prohibit states from seceding? And by what legal right did Lincoln prosecute the Civil War or, as one of our debaters tonight calls it, the War Between The States, or, when he gets really personal, Lincoln’s war?

Yes, the Emancipation Proclamation freed the slaves, but only the slaves in the secessionist South, where the proclamation had absolutely no force of law. Where the proclamation could have had some force of law, in the border states that didn't secede, such as Maryland and Kentucky and Pennsylvania, it specifically permitted slavery to continue. Humble? Yes, Lincoln in his speeches and his personal life dramatized an innate humility. But politically, when he won the presidential nomination in 1860 here in Chicago, he had demonstrated the political savvy and cruelty that exploited the moment of the instance that he was nominated. Reasonable people can discuss and disagree about Lincoln and his legacy. But we don t have to be disagreeable. We all share a common respect for individual liberty, small government, the rule of law, and firm property rights. This book presents the remarks of two articulate and informed scholars about whether and how those values played out in the life of Abraham Lincoln.

Recommended Reading: Hamilton's Curse: How Jefferson's Arch Enemy Betrayed the American Revolution--and What It Means for Americans Today, by Thomas DiLorenzo (Hardcover). Description: Two of the most influential figures in American history. Two opposing political philosophies. Two radically different visions for America. Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton were without question two of the most important Founding Fathers. They were also the fiercest of rivals. Of these two political titans, it is Jefferson—–the revered author of the Declaration of Independence and our third president—–who is better remembered today. But in fact it is Hamilton’s political legacy that has triumphed—–a legacy that has subverted the Constitution and transformed the federal government into the very leviathan state that our forefathers fought against in the American Revolution. Continued below...

How did we go from the Jeffersonian ideal of limited government to the bloated imperialist system of Hamilton’s design? Acclaimed economic historian Thomas J. DiLorenzo provides the troubling answer in Hamilton’s Curse. 

DiLorenzo reveals how Hamilton, first as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention and later as the nation’s first and most influential treasury secretary, masterfully promoted an agenda of nationalist glory and interventionist economics—–core beliefs that did not die with Hamilton in his fatal duel with Aaron Burr. Carried on through his political heirs, the Hamiltonian legacy:

• Wrested control into the hands of the federal government by inventing the myth of the Constitution’s “implied powers”
• Established the imperial presidency (Hamilton himself proposed a permanent president—–in other words, a king)
• Devised a national banking system that imposes boom-and-bust cycles on the American economy
• Saddled Americans with a massive national debt and oppressive taxation
• Inflated the role of the federal courts in order to eviscerate individual liberties and state sovereignty
• Pushed economic policies that lined the pockets of the wealthy and created a government system built on graft, spoils, and patronage
• Transformed state governments from Jeffersonian bulwarks of liberty to beggars for federal crumbs
By debunking the Hamiltonian myths perpetuated in recent admiring biographies, DiLorenzo exposes an uncomfortable truth: The American people are no longer the masters of their government but its servants. Only by restoring a system based on Jeffersonian ideals can Hamilton’s curse be lifted, at last.

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