Since your knowledge of history obviously exceeds my own (I'm well read in a lot of areas but not history and next to nothing about the civil war) Let me ask you this....
According to the comments of someone I read on some other website thread (not libertarian friendly), "prior to the civil war, only the abolitionists had fantasies and speculated on the 'WHAT-IF problem' and the "What-Then problem'. Only the abolitionist talked long about 'what-if' the South did seceded without resistance at all from the North, How would the Northern Government fund itself? I have read someone's opinion that the South funded the North central government to the tune of 75% or more.
And I read another's opinion that most pre-civil war intellectuals in the USA never considered the 'what-then' proposition or even advocated the proposition for the Federal Government to simply "Buy Slaves their freedom". It was considered impossible price to pay to buy slaves their freedom. American pre-civil war intellectuals hardly took note how other countries solved the 'slavery problem'.
Finally, even if the federal govt went into massive debt and bought all the slaves and gave slaves a start as the 'Abolitionists Dream' called for, there was the "Then-What problem" ie 1) What would the former slave owners do for labor now that the labor pool has gone? and 2) What would the slaves do with their freedom and no money?
(I also read that it was from the the 'Then-What Problem' that a consensus was arrived at by various abolitionists around question 2: that for the freed slaves payment should not be money but rather payment should be: "40 acres and a mule, 2 kinds of seed for 2 acres of land, 2 rifles, 2 cows, 2 goats, 2 pigs and 36 chickens" where considered "reasonable enough". This was the only 'pre-civil war problem' that was 'solved' prior to the war. The 'unthinkable price' to buy slaves from their masters and the 'labor problem' made solving the 'slave problem' a 'social stalemate' with just abolitionists screaming in againsts the winds of the status quo like the idealists that they were. And by the time the Civil war ended, all that people could recall from the pre-civil war discussions was "40 acres and a mule" for freed slaves was thought to be 'fair'.
Not being a historian or having read much history at all...I found those remarks interesting ... have you read these too? Are they factual? And is it a correct assessment of the pre-civil war stalemate over the issue of slavery?
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