Posts filed under ‘History’
“Some of what people are saying in this mosque controversy is very similar to what German media was saying about Jews in the 1920s and 1930s,” Imam Abdullah Antepli, Muslim chaplain at Duke University, told the New York Times. Yes, we all recall the Jewish suicide bombers of that period, as we recall the Jewish yells for holy war, the Jewish demands for the veiling of women and the stoning of homosexuals, and the Jewish burning of newspapers that published cartoons they did not like.
How are wars won? The preferred way is for one side to see that its own victory is impossible and that it will face much heavier costs by continuing than by surrendering or making peace. By making a deal sooner, the side that’s losing often reasons that it can get better terms.
What do you do, though, if the other side isn’t going to give up? Here’s what Sherman said about the French-German conflict but which also applies to America’s Civil War and many other conflicts as well:
Proclamation of Thanksgiving
By the President of the United States of America.
Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the Unites States the Eighty-eighth.
Health insurance in the USA is a modern invention—and by modern, we mean only 80 years ago. So, what did people do before that?
“Bring Out Your Dead”
Many historians trace health insurance back to ancient civilizations like Greece and Rome. Imagine, for instance, you lived in Roman times. You might join a collegium—a society, usually with both a joining fee and a maintenance fee, that existed for the benefit of its members. Of course, little could be done for you if you became seriously ill. But when you died, your collegium would ensure that you had a decent burial.
Collegia were precursors to the medieval guilds, which operated along similar principles. Like-minded people, sharing a craft, profession, or religion, formed a guild. Guilds influenced the politics of town life and the prices of goods, but one personal benefit of belonging to a guild was that if you died, your guild would bury you and take care of your family.
Are you seeing a trend here? Health insurance was not a concern, because medicine was not very advanced. People who became seriously ill in ancient or medieval times were more likely to die than recover. So, collegia and guilds basically offered burial insurance, not health insurance.
“The Doctor Will See You Now”
Now fast-forward a few hundred years to the end of the 19th century. Medical knowledge had advanced, but if you fell ill, you were almost certain to be cared for at home by your family. In the United States and Europe, most people still lived on farms. There was no way to contact a doctor, no local hospital, and probably still no cure for your illness. In 1900, the average life expectancy in the United States was only 47 years.
But the world was modernizing. By the turn of the century, the telephone and the automobile had been invented. People were moving from farm to town and from town to city. This meant more people had access to doctors and even hospitals, which were improving rapidly.
In 1904, the American Medical Association created the Council of Medical Education to standardize medical school admission and to ensure that medical training was uniform, including two years of clinical rotation at a teaching hospital. By the 1910s, state licensing boards were also enforcing regulations. American doctors were starting to professionalize.
“Do You Have Insurance?”
Even so, your biggest worry around the turn of the century was not the bill from your doctor. It was your lost wages from missing work due to illness. So, after 1890, there was a growing demand for “sickness” insurance. It wouldn’t pay your doctor’s fee, which was still low, but it would pay some of your lost wages if you were laid up. By 1911, the employees of Montgomery Ward had joined the first group “sickness” plan.
Before too long, progressives—including former president Theodore Roosevelt—sounded the call for national insurance. In 1912, Roosevelt ran for a third (non-consecutive) presidential term on the Progressive, or “Bull Moose,” ticket. At the Progressive National Convention, he said, “the hazards of sickness, accident, invalidism, involuntary unemployment, and old age should be provided for through insurance.”
The official Progressive platform called for “the protection of home life against the hazards of sickness, irregular employment, and old age through the adoption of a system of social insurance adapted to American use.” But obviously, it did not come to pass. Roosevelt lost the election to Woodrow Wilson, and World War I put warfare ahead of health care.
August 21, 1959 – August 21, 2009: Fifty Years. The anniversary didn’t just leap out of nowhere and take us by surprise. We’ve known the date. Any kid in elementary school here knows the remarkable history that preceded the fifty years today marks. The tee shirts, mugs and bags have been printed, bobblehead dolls neatly packed in their boxes to stand unforgivingly on the special deals pedestal. The surprise is the parade that isn’t to be walked, the fireworks not ignited, the celebrations left undone. People are quietly remembering. It’s to be a quiet 50th anniversary for the 50th state of the United States.
Hawaii’s Legislature must have exhausted themselves, finding the means to cause the people of Hawaii to be the highest taxed in the Union. Oh, and we can’t forget their generous raise to themselves, a bit reminiscent of the Congressmen in Washington. But, alas! There aren’t the funds for even a modest celebration of Fifty Years of Statehood for the Fiftieth State.
Hawaii’s 50th anniversary as the 50th state in the Union will be marked by a Commemorative Conference for the next 50 years. Whoopie! Oh, and there are to be reenactments of the overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani. A nice, quiet conference and solemn reenactment. Seems the most excitement is to be the Aloha Bobblehead.
Along with claiming the highest taxes, Hawaii also claims the first Black President. Obama. America’s President. Hawaii’s Son. That’s what’s proclaimed on the box, anyway, and on the base of the bobblehead: “Obama –Aloha Bobblehead– America’s President–Hawaii’s Son” Will the Son Hawaii claims make mention of the half century of statehood of the state where it’s claimed he was born? Or will Hawaii be as absent from mention by Hawaii’s Son, as from the Son’s MySpace and FaceBook entries? It’s quite the disconnect. One’s proud to claim the other, but the other is destined to be an Aloha Bobblehead.
You can read a brief, government approved timeline of Hawaii’s walk to statehood, if you want to, right here. The history of Hawaii’s Monarchy, as the Republic’s, predates this timeline. Most school kids here are adequately versed in Hawaii history, and the Palace is on the must visit list of elementary students on Oahu. The history of Hawaii, really, is much richer than her present appears.
(note: I bought the Bobblehead to go with the 57 States pin.)
The Blue Dogs are the political descendants of a now defunct-in-name Southern Democratic group known as the Boll Weevils, who played a critical role in the early 1980s by supporting President Ronald Reagan’s tax cut plan. The Boll Weevils, in turn, may be considered the descendants of the Dixiecrats and the “states’ rights” Democrats of the 1940s through ’60s.
“Blue Dog Democrat” is derived from the term “Yellow Dog Democrat.” Former Texas Democrat Rep. Pete Geren is credited for coining the term, explaining that the members had been “choked blue” by “extreme” Democrats from the left. The term is also a reference to the “Blue Dog” paintings of Cajun artist George Rodrigue of Lafayette, Louisiana; the original members of the coalition would regularly meet in the offices of Louisiana representatives Billy Tauzin and Jimmy Hayes, both of whom had Rodrigue’s paintings on their walls. Tauzin and Hayes later switched to the Republican Party. An additional explanation for the term: “A blue dog is our mascot because when dogs are not let into the house, they stay outside in the cold and turn blue,” a reference to moderate and conservative Democrats feeling left out of the Party which they believed had shifted to the political left.
The Blue Dog Coalition was formed in 1994 during the 104th Congress to give more conservative members from the Democratic party a unified voice after the Democrats’ loss of Congress in 1994.
The coalition was notably successful in a special election of February 2004 in Kentucky to fill a vacant seat in the House of Representatives. They were also successful in the November 2004 elections, when three of the five races in which a Democrat won a formerly Republican House seat were won by Blue Dogs. Freshman Blue Dogs in the House are sometimes nicknamed “Blue Pups.”
In 2005, the members of the Blue Dog Coalition voted 32 to 4 in favor of the bill to limit access to bankruptcy protection (S 256).
In the summer of 2009, The Economist magazine said “[t]he debate over health care… may be the pinnacle of the group’s power so far” and quoted Charlie Stenholm, a founding Blue Dog, as saying that “this is the first year for the new kennel in which their votes are really going to make a difference.”
-tip to ES
Whatever happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence?
Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.
Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.
Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army.
Another had two sons captured.
Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.
They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.
What kind of men were they?
Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists.
Eleven were merchants,
Nine were farmers and large plantation owners;
Men of means, well educated, but they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.
Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy.
He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.
Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly.
He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding.
His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward.
Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer, Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.
At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters.
He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire.
The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.
Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed.
The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.
John Hart was driven from his wife’s bedside as she was dying.
Their 13 children fled for their lives.
His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste.
For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished.
So, take a few minutes while enjoying your 4th of July holiday and silently thank these patriots. It’s not much to ask for the price they paid!
Remember: freedom is never free!
-email from DvS
by Mark Harvey
I’ve been doing some digging and reading and ran across interesting data that I hadn’t known and data that I did at one time know but have since forgotten. I find it “Rather” curious that Obama invokes the names of FDR, Kennedy and Reagan on a frequent basis but I haven’t heard him mention President Truman at all. Perhaps he did and I missed it.
If, as Obama claims, he is a student of history why has he not mentioned Truman’s attempt at doing the exact same thing Obama is doing now even though Truman’s efforts were declared unconstitutional and threats of impeachment made him back down?
Interesting, isn’t it?
I have heard how great Truman was as a President even though his approval ratings upon exiting stage left were lower than George W. Bush’s approval ratings when he left office, I find that “Rather” quizzical as well.
Did you know that in the 1950s there were two “agencies” called the Office of Price Stabilization and the Wage Stabilization Board? Both were federally mandated and they backfired on the economy as well. However, that didn’t stop Truman from taking over the steel mills whose workers were threatening to go on strike. Other avenues were available to the then President but, there was a war on called the Korean War and Truman claimed imaginary powers unto the office of the Presidency and moved to seize the steel mills. Sound familiar?
It’s called degeneration into Despotism. That’s what was charged against Truman and in a “decision” of a federal judge back then, Judge David A Pine stated after Truman claimed “inherent” power of the Presidency:
The non-existence of this “inherent” power in the President has been recognized by eminent writers, and I cite in this connection the unequivocal language of the late Chief Justice William Howards Taft in his treatise entitled Our Chief Magistrate and His Powers (1916) wherein he says: “The true view of the Executive function is, as I conceive it, that the President can exercise no power which cannot be fairly and reasonably traced to some specific grant of power or justly implied and included within such express grant as proper and necessary to its exercise. Such specific grant must be either in the Federal Constitution or in an Act of Congress passed in pursuance thereof. There is no undefined residuum of power which he can exercise because it seems to him to be in the public interest, and there is nothing in the Neagle case and its definition of a law of the United States, or in other precedents, warranting such an inference. The grants of Executive power are necessarily in general terms in order not to embarrass the Executive within the field of action plainly marked for him, but his jurisdiction must be justified and vindicated by affirmative constitutional or statutory provision, or is does not exist.” (US House, The Steel Seizure Case, 428)
In other words, ladies and gentlemen, the actions of the current administration taking over the financial industry and the auto industry is entirely unconstitutional and are impeachable offenses no matter how honorable they may seem to be. Truman tried it and failed and was “disappointed” that he was denied his day of glory.
tip to UK Fan