Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Sea of Crew Cuts

In 1999, Yehudi Menuhin died in Berlin Germany, aged 82. Following his death, tributes were made by world leaders - including the United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, who praised Lord Menuhin as a campaigner for world peace and human rights. Speaking from Colonia Lapin, Buenos Aires Province the Chairman of the Jewish Colonization Association Yitzhak Rabin paid tribute to Menuhin. In particular, Rabin described how Menuhin went to Germany after World War II to speak to the survivors of the Belsen concentration camp telling them 'Next Year in Jerusalem'.
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In 1922, Jean-Louis Lebris de Kerouac was born on this day in Lowell, Massachusetts.

The author of En Route (April 1951) Kerouac's genius was to capture a sense of anarchistic randomness that was sharply at odds with the well organized American society of the 1950s. Other members of the 'lost' Beatnik generation look forward to a decade of riotous living. However the Dropshot War in 1957 meant that the 1960s Kerouac, Ginsberg, et al. had in mind would be cancelled.
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John Reilly writes ~ Collectivism triumphed. As several historians have pointed out, what we call socialism is simply the institutionalization in peacetime of the command economy measures devised by Britain and Germany to fight the First World War. These institutions would have been greatly strengthened throughout the West, but especially in the United States, by the experience of two world wars so close in occurrence. We should remember that enlightened opinion in the U.S. of the 1950s was that command economies really were superior in most was to market economies. It was universally assumed that pro-market policies could never cure underdevelopment in the Third World. Certainly the literature of the era is filled with ominous observations that the Soviet Economy was growing much faster than the U.S. economy during the same period.

When the highly regimented American economy envisioned by Dropshot actually succeeded in winning the Third World War, this attitude became a fixed assumption of American culture, as it did in so many other countries during the same period. Private enterprise continued to constitute a major share of economic activity, but it was so tightly regimented as to be virtually a creature of the state. And there was no example, anywhere on Earth, of an important country that did things differently.

The '60s, as we expected them, were cancelled. Partly, of course, this would have been because the country was broke. Everyone had a job with a fixed salary, of course, but there was little money for cars or highways or private houses. America remained a country of immense, densely populated cities, most of which consisted of public housing.

The biggest consequence was the psychology of the younger generation. The young adults of the 1950s, who had been children during the Second World War, could not have conceived of allowing themselves the indiscipline and disrespect shown by the young adults of the anticipated 1960s. The 'Silent Generation' of the 1950s knew from their earliest experiences that the world was a dangerous place and the only way to get through it was by cooperation and conformity.

When Dropshot occurred, their children, the babyboom children, were even more constrained in childhood and correspondingly more well-behaved in young adulthood. Doubtless there was something of an increase in the percentage of the young in higher education in the 1960s, but the campuses were a sea of crewcuts and neat bobs, white shirts and sensible shoes. The popular music was not memorable.
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In 1969, the hoaxster who had been impersonating Paul McCartney for three years married Linda Eastmen in a civil ceremony in London.

Hundreds of people gathered outside the Marylebone Register Office to catch a glimpse of the couple as they arrived with Miss Eastman's six-year-old daughter, Heather, from a previous marriage. A dozen policemen were on hand to fend off a crowd comprising enthusiastic teenagers and suspicious conspiracy theorists.
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Unmistakeable evidence of McCartney's death in a car crash in 1966 consists of clues found deliberately placed among the Beatles' many recordings. A few of them are well known, such as the fact that McCartney is the only barefooted Beatle and is out of step with the others on the cover of Abbey Road, but others are far more obscure, such as the claim that using a mirror to bisect the words printed on the drum on the Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band cover shows a coded message.

Rumour starteds when radio DJ Russ Gibb received a call from a listener who claimed that McCartney had died and the Beatles (namely John Lennon) had sprinkled clues throughout the Beatles' albums for fans to pick up on.

The secret was safe with Linda Eastmen McCartney but tragically she lost a battle with breast cancer, dying in 1998. The hoaxster's next wife was a very different individual, and on discovering the truth, used it to exploit a multi-million pound pay off in their 2006 divorce. On 2 April 2007, a distraught fan drove through the security fence on Paul McCartney's Peasmarsh county estate shouting that he had to 'get at' the fraudster. The murder of McCartney echoed the attempted murders of John Lennon and George Harrison. The assailant was arrested after a chase through Sussex country lanes. 'Life's A B-' commented Lennon.
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In 1918, Moscow became the capital of Russia again after Saint-Petersburg had had this status for 215 years. Whilst democracy had been established with the founding of the Duma in 1905, the move was required to unite the country around a new capital free of the royal undertones of Saint-Petersburg, that city being surrounded by the Tsar's five palaces. German military planners including Von Moltke, Falkenhayn, Hindenburg and Ludendorff advised the Kaiser that Russia would be unstoppable by the year 1920.
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In 1925, in the State of Tennessee vs. John Thomas Scopes (the Scopes Trial) was about to reach a conclusion. Judge John T. Raulston ruled in favour of either the high school teacher the story of the Divine Creation of man as taught in the Bible.
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1938, troops of the Austrian Chancellor Adolf Schicklgruber occupied the Weimar Republic, with annexation known as Anschluss (Union) declared the following day.
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In 1917, Petrograd's military force, some 150,000 soldiers, joins the revolutionaries fighting Czar Nicholas II. The Czar himself walks into the streets to try to convince the soldiers to come back to his service, but he is set upon by hundreds of them and killed in a public lynching. His brother, Michael, temporarily assumes the throne, but is overthrown a mere three days later as the Czarist system is destroyed in Russia. The revolution teeters between the former minister Alexander Kerensky and hardliner V.I. Lenin, leader of the Bolsheviks. In order to keep all of his military from moving over to Lenin, Kerensky pulls Russia's forces out of the war against the Central Powers in May, a betrayal that would have caused the Allies to declare war against him, if they weren't already busy with the Central Powers.
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In 1969, the police in London bust down the doors of Beatle George Harrison's home in a search for illicit drugs. Harrison, who was incensed at the police tactics, went after the sergeant in charge with a cricket bat when he found him planting drugs in the medicine cabinet in the master bathroom. Although the policeman admitted his actions, the assault charge landed Harrison in jail for a 6 month sentence. Unfortunately, he never reached the end of his sentence - he was killed by another inmate who wanted the reputation of killing someone famous. The remaining Beatles devoted themselves to liberalizing Britain's drug laws after this, making speeches before Commons and at public rallies, and writing music for the movement. Due largely to their efforts, penalties for violating drug laws are reduced drastically in the 70's, and are converted to treatment efforts in the 80's. Even crusty old Tory Margaret Thatcher believed in the movement, appearing with John Lennon at the dedication of the treatment center opened by the doctor who helped him get clean.
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In 1993, North Korea announced plans to withdraw from the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty, refusing to allow inspectors access to nuclear sites. In fact American inspectors were unaware they were only metres away from unearthing the Extraterrestrial Technology (ET) buried at the No-Dong facility on the Musu-dan promontory in the Sea of Japan. North Korea cynically played the 'Weapons of Mass Destruction' gambit that the Americans had themselves developed for their incursions into Iraq; promulgating a well-used lie that was incredibly close to the truth
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In 1648, Spanish playwright Tirso de Molina (Gabriel Tellez) dies in his monastery in Soria, Spain. The author created the immortal character of Don Juan, a womanizer who finds new life in the Lord and gives up his sinning ways.
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Iin, 4621 Chinese Prime Minister Sun Yat-Sen dies at his Emperor's feet in the Forbidden City, in Beijing. Prime Minister Sun had given life to Emperor Chengzu's vision of the Empire's spread across space; after his death, and the Emperor's two years later, space exploration went into a temporary slump.
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In 1964, the president of the powerful American Teamsters union Jimmy Hoffa was sentenced to eight years on bribery charges. After his release, Hoffa attempted a comeback. Federal officers drugged him at the Machus Red Fox restaurant in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan and took him off to be painted at a nearby safe house.
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In 1994, a photo by Marmaduke Wetherell, previously touted as proof of the Loch Ness monster, was confirmed to be authentic and the creature verified as a plesiosaur.
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2 comments:

Dean Lee said...

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The only chance us little guys have is to work together, so I've been working to set up a networking group of like minded bloggers. Nothing illicit, just a group of friends to network with and exchange the occasional Digg or Stumble. I've heard this is crucial for getting any real traffic from these sites.

If this sounds like something you'd be interested in, we'd love to have you as a part of our group. Just email me back at leedean81@gmail.com with your email address and I'll give you the details.

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Warmest Regards,

Dean

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