While a U.S. citizen for 63 years, I’d never before heard this story of U.S. origins, told well by Christopher Blattman is his new book Why We Fight (pp. 38-41). Seems the U.S. revolution was a textbook example of war due to elite interests diverging from those of most citizens. I quote:
Jeff did not really rebut in detail the claims about land speculation causing conflicts of interest among the American elite, which seems like the central thesis.
"But Canada and Australia found peaceful paths to independence from Britain."
Yes, but Canada and Australia did that in a world where Britain had lost a major colony to revolution. It's not clear that peaceful exit from British control was available before that.
Lord Mansfield's ruling didn't prohibit slavery outside Britain, nor did it establish a legal precedent with reasoning that would result in such a prohibition later. Mansfield's ruling was that there was no positive law permitting slavery in England, whereas there was legalized slavery in colonies. Abolitionism became more popular after US independence, with a wave of newly independent northern states passing anti-slavery legislation.
It was foreseeable. In the 17th century, abolitionism may have been a matter of religious minorities, but that had changed by the second half of the 18th century with widely noticed events like Lord Mansfield's 1772 ruling.
That indictment of Jefferson never appeared in the Declaration. It appeared in an earlier draft of the Declaration that Jefferson sent to a friend with a cover letter excoriating the Georgia representative for saying that Georgia would not join if that indictment remained. The draft is owned by the New York Public Library and they exhibit it every year around July 4. (Or at least, they did so re-pandemic.)
This puts a bit of a different light on the accusation that Jefferson (because he owned slaves) approved of the institution.
"Land Speculators Made U.S."
Well, they don't call us the Land of Opportunity for nothing.
privileges that British colonial policy would undermine [...] ownership of enslaved peopleNo reason to think Washington expected that (Jefferson in the Declaration was blaming the king for having slaves brought over in the first place). The Brits continued to permit slavery in their Caribbean colonies up until the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833 (by which time Washington & Jefferson were both dead).