Blood of Tyrants: George Washington & the Forging of the Presidency

Blood of Tyrants: George Washington & the Forging of the Presidency

by Logan Beirne
Blood of Tyrants: George Washington & the Forging of the Presidency

Blood of Tyrants: George Washington & the Forging of the Presidency

by Logan Beirne


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Blood of Tyrants reveals the surprising details of our Founding Fathers’ approach to government and this history’s impact on today. Delving into the forgotten—and often lurid—facts of the Revolutionary War, Logan Beirne focuses on the nation’s first commander in chief, George Washington, as he shaped the very meaning of the United States Constitution in the heat of battle.

Key episodes illustrate how the Founders dealt with thorny wartime issues: Who decides war strategy? When should we use military tribunals over civilian trials? Should we inflict harsh treatment on enemy captives if it means saving American lives? How do we protect citizens’ rights when the nation is struggling to defend itself? Beirne finds evidence in previously-unexplored documents such as General Washington’s letters debating torture, an eyewitness account of the military tribunal that executed a British prisoner, Founders’ letters warning against government debt, and communications pointing to a power struggle between Washington and the Continental Congress.

Vivid stories from the Revolution frame Washington’s pivotal role in the drafting of the Constitution. The Founders saw the first American commander in chief as the template for all future presidents: a leader who would fiercely defend Americans’ rights and liberties against all forms of aggression.

Blood of Tyrants pulls the reader directly into the scenes, filling the void in our understanding of the presidency and our ingenious Founders’ pragmatic approach to issues we still face today.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781594036408
Publisher: Encounter Books
Publication date: 04/23/2013
Pages: 440
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

Logan Beirne is an Olin Scholar at Yale Law School. Prior to this appointment, Logan practiced as an attorney with the law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell in New York City and was a Fulbright Scholar at Queen’s University. He received his JD from Yale Law School, where he was a Coker Fellow and awarded the Edgar M. Cullen Prize for his constitutional scholarship. He and his writings have been featured in USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Post, The Washington Times, Reuters, Fox News, CSPAN, and numerous other media outlets. Logan has served on the boards of directors for multiple charities and is admitted to the New York and Connecticut Bars.

Logan’s passion for the Revolution is in his blood —he is directly descended from Revolutionary War patriots and his family tree includes the “Father of the Constitution,” James Madison. Some of Washington’s papers were discovered in Logan’s ancestor’s storage chest.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

I The King of America 13

1 The Not-So-United States 15

2 Not as Happy in Peace as They Had Been Glorious in War 21

3 The Shadow Government 27

4 The Phoenix 32

5 Wield the Sword 39

6 Supreme Law of the Land 45

II Cruel and Usual Punishment 49

7 The Currents of War 51

8 Exitus Acta Probat 57

9 American Fortitude 65

10 Necessary Evil 71

11 Fully Justifiable 81

12 To Defend the Nation 90

III Dictator of America 99

13 Scorpion on a Leash 102

14 Between a Hawk and a Buzzard 115

15 Onslaught 123

16 The Times That Try Men's Souls 135

17 Reevaluation 140

18 Victory or Death 150

19 Idolatry 160

20 Dictator Perpetuo 167

IV Tribunals & Tribulations 177

21 Gentleman Johnny vs. Granny Gates 180

22 A Traitor Lurks 189

23 Treason of the Blackest Dye 200

24 Commissions & Courts-Martial 209

25 American Military Justice 218

V His Excellency's Loyal Subjects 229

26 Total Ruin 231

27 Band of Brethren 238

28 Poison & Peas 245

29 Americas Defender 253

30 License to Plunder 258

31 Not-So-Civil War 271

VI Could Have been King 281

32 O God! It Is All Over! 284

33 Winning the Peace 290

34 Spectacles & Speculation 296

35 The Greatest Man in the World 304

Epilogue: Governing from the Grave 313

Acknowledgments 320

Notes 323

Index 407

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