As I keep an eye on my website stats, I notice that some thousands of people, over the last year or so, have downloaded, from some interior page of my website, a book deftly lampooning President Andrew Jackson, published by Seba Smith in 1834. Seba Smith is widely credited with originating the genre that Mathew achieved grassroots fame in with his own character, "Ethan Spike." Smith launched his "Major Jack Downing" series of faux letters to the editor in January of 1830; but I recently discovered evidence that Mathew wrote in this style as early as March of 1829.
Just today, I discovered Mathew's analysis of President Jackson's inaugural address, published on March 13, 1829. This means that he precedes Smith in this regard, as well. Now, why thousands of people--presumably scholars and college students--would be so very interested in Smith's work, but would perhaps have little interest in Mathew's 16-year-old analysis, is a question. I find the whole thing annoying. I am pleased to offer Smith's book for download (though it is very easily obtained directly through Google); but would Mathew not get equal billing, under the circumstances? I'll reproduce that article, in full, below. It shows that, at age 16, Mathew's insight into both politics and psychology was keen. Such wisdom did not come from that lifetime--it came from still-earlier ones, as is always the case for child prodigies.
I interviewed psychiatrist Dianne Hennessy Powell on my erstwhile internet radio show, "Metaphysical Explorations." Too bad Dr. Powell never thought to ask me about my own work, or my own case.
Now, for the past couple of months, people have been furiously downloading an article about the "Submarine Man" past-life case, i.e., James Johnston reincarnated as Bruce Kelly. Once again, I made that article (and, until I was asked to quit, the entire book) downloadable, for the good of the Cause. I am quite pleased to see so many people interested in it. Last month over 600 people downloaded that article, and this month is looking very close to that figure. But wouldn't these people, as they are downloading material off the back pages of my site, like to know something about my own case, as well?
Nevermind. I am still experiencing my 19th-century frustration at being similarly ignored. But I think I will have my day. Here is my past-life assessment of Andrew Jackson's inaugural address, which I wrote at age 16. (If I could analyze Jackson's speech at age 16 in my past life, rest assured I could do the same thing, today, for his modern "reincarnation," President Trump.) Note that "D." is a proven signature for Mathew, when he will begin working for the New York "Consellation" the following year.
The "New-England Galaxy"
March 13, 1829
Messrs. Editors.--I have read over the president's inaugural address with some attention, to gather from it as well as I can, what sort of an administration we are to have, and communicate my few remarks to you, supposing that you are ready to support or oppose it, as far as you may deem it right or wrong. I find that people generaly think this speech was really written by president Jackson himself; and we may by studying it a little find something of the workings of his mind and the complexion of his political principles.
In the outset I am struck with his saying 'it devolves upon me to manage the public revenue.' Now I never knew before that the constitution gave the president any other power over the revenue than congress should be willing to confide to him. I infer from this that either I have, or that president Jackson has, a very confused notion of our constitution.
The president then says, 'I shall keep in view the limitations as well as the extent of the executive power, trusting thereby so to discharge the functions of my office as not to transcend its authority.' Now if he keeps in view 'the limitations of the executive power,' he is pretty sure to keep in view its 'extent.' This I take to be a plain sequitur. But why should he think it necessary to announce to the people of the United States that he shall not trample on the laws or constitution? I always supposed that this power was so well limited and guarded by our institutions, that we had no need of any verbal assurance from any president upon this point. The next paragraph about the rights of the states is of the same import.
Then comes the management of the public revenue again; which, it seems, is to be managed, as far as it may be entrusted to the discretion of the executive, so as not to encourage public or private profligacy. This is a very negative sort of pledge, for I take it the country has not hitherto been cursed with any extravagant profligacy in these respects, and, as I supposed, was in no very imminent danger of it.
In regard to imports, the president's declaration may be taken to be either in favor of our against the tariff principles, according to the construction he gives to the proposition that 'agriculture, commerce, and manufactures should be equally favored,' and to the exception in favor of 'products essential to national independence.' This part of the speech is safely worded, and leaves him at liberty to act as he may think best, on any particular position.
I do not see what occasion there was to say that the country has no need of a greater standing army. In this part of the speech the new president is a little rhetorical on the subject of the 'AEgis,' so much so, that it does not seem to me to be so distinguished for plainness, as some have maintained.
Passing over the Indians, I am a little puzzled with the next paragraph, in which it is intimated that a reform (in italics) is loudly called for by the nation, whereby the executive patronage shall be prevented from influencing elections, and power shall not be continued in unfaithful and incompetent hands. This is of course a censure upon the preceding administration, but for what particular appointmkents or continuances in office, does not appear. This is not a very magnanimaous declaration as far as Mr Adams is concerned, to whom Gen. Jackson is certainlly under great personal obligations for his services in relation to the Florida business. Besides, to take advantage of such a solemn public occasion to reproach an administration over which he has just gained a victory, is any thing but that dignified and heroic courtesy which we should look for in a president and a soldier. if Mr Duff Greene's new cabinet is a part of this reform, i think it admits of a doubt whether it is one very loudly called for by the public voice.
The president then says he shall depend more on 'the integrity and zeal of the public officers, than their numbers.' As to their number it is, I believe, prescribed by law, so that I do not see how he can do any thing in this matter but appoint the number prescribed by the present laws until they are altered.
The last paragraph perplexes me more than any other part. 'A diffidence, perhaps too just, in my own qualifications.' Had the president merely professed a diffidence in his own qualifications, it would have been plain enough, but when he adds that this diffidence is 'perhaps too just,' it is no more nor no less intimating a doubt whether his diffidence is just, and a man's doubting whether he has good ground for his diffidence, is very much the same as not having it. This is not verbal criticism, though that would be perfectly justifiable; it is tracing as nearly as I can, the ideas passing in the writer's mind when he wrote the paragraph.
On the whole I should infer from this speech that our new president has rather a confused and indistinct notion of the laws and constitution he is called to administer, and that he imagines his powers to be much more extensive than they really are. The widest discretion with which the office is invested, is in the selection and appointment of officers, and in negociations with foreign powers. In these, the executive is liable to be checked and controlled. In respect to the other functions of his office, he is a machine, the movements of which are very strictly regulated by the constitution and laws; not laws that can be broken or observed at will, but laws in obedience to which he can alone move.
Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.
Music opening this page, "Sick, Tired and Wasted,"
Redacted Tonight/Lee Camp theme