The Civil War


This was the first course I experimented with GPT-4 and Whisper transcription on. Like other military histories I've since explored, it was so focused on military manuevers and personalities that not everything in it was a good fit for eternal memory via SRS. But, that said, nothing could be more important to study for a concerned citizen of the republic than the most defining conflict of its history.

If you've never heard a detailed description of Lincoln's genius, it's worth the time investment for this alone. He really was a model of leadership: genuinely wise, without much ego, approached problems with a sense of humor, and just relentlessly outmanuevered his opponents.

Another tactic that I think about a lot now is the way Lincoln started from progressive ideas (say, in his debates), and then became decidedly more pragmatic in his actions when he entered office (though not abandoning the underlying progressive principles). I think this is a good model for how to approach politics in general: be a progressive in your heart, but a pragmatist in your actions. (That last sentence was generated by Copilot--an underrated blogposter.)