Psi Phi Society–2020 Winter Session

A new year and a new session of the Psi Phi (ΨΦ) Society…for those that do not know this has nothing to do the genre of SciFi…instead it is a group of academics that meet 4 times a year for a meal and some discussion on topics to be announced at the dinner.

Hard to believe it is Winter….we have had very little cold weather hardly any cool weather…..most temps have been in the 70s…low temps in the high 50s to high 60s…humidity about 94%…all in all just damn miserable for Winter.

Enough bitching ….onward…..

11 members of which 6 were in attendance…..the topic for discussion was America’s Obsession with guns….the draw was from the stainless  bed pan and we were given 30 minutes to prepare our positions…..but not before we had a great meal and a bit of schmoozing…..

My belief is that there needs to be an actual discussion not just finger pointing that we have had in the past 30 years…probably longer….

Gun violence is a uniquely American problem that has left the rest of the world scratching their heads over how a country could choose guns over the lives of its citizens. We have looked at various aspects of this issue and here are some of our top articles from this year. 

Hooked on Lead — Covering America’s Gun Obsession

“For the first time in more than 20 years, Congress could approve federal funding to study gun violence, which kills nearly 40,000 Americans each year. A House bill approved Tuesday includes $25 million for research, split evenly between the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

Think about this……40,000 Americans die by gun violence every year…..

I am not optimistic with Congress in the lead……meetings, studies, and hearings and NOTHING will change…so we are back to finger pointing…..and more Americans will die.

After several hours of argument…..we decided to let it go (for now)….after a snifter of Cognac the meeting broke up and the Spring session will be announced at a later date.

Always a joy to see old friends and have a good debate something should be tried in our country these days instead of resorting to name calling and insults…..if only.

Our Spring session will be planned by the Chi Xi (χξ) Circle and will be announced at a later date.

“lego ergo scribo”

What Is The Purpose Of Impeachment?

Paper #5 of 5

This is a thought in a series of thoughts on the impeachment process.

The Senate Trial begins tomorrow…..all the jurors have been sworn in and signed the oath….time to get down to business.

Is Trump guilty or not?

I care not this series of posts are about the impeachment process not some silly notion of tribalism.

An easy answer for those that look for easy answers…..for those that want to pass on the whining of politicians and pundits.

Yes one of the purposes for the process of impeachment is to remove the president from office (a process that has not been very effective by the way)…..but it is NOT the only purpose for the process.

Time to look t the Founding Fathers and their opinions and thoughts on the process need to be brought out…..

As Congress considers formal charges of impeachment against President Donald Trump, they should consider words spoken at the Constitutional Convention, when the Founders explained that impeachment was intended to have many important purposes, not just removing a president from office.

A critical debate took place on July 20, 1787, which resulted in adding the impeachment clause to the U.S. Constitution. Benjamin Franklin, the oldest and probably wisest delegate at the Convention, said that when the president falls under suspicion, a “regular and peaceable inquiry” is needed.

…statements made at the Constitutional Convention explaining that the Founders viewed impeachment as a regular practice with three purposes:

  • To remind both the country and the president that he is not above the law
  • To deter abuses of power
  • To provide a fair and reliable method to resolve suspicions about misconduct.

https://www.juancole.com/2019/12/founders-removal-purpose-impeachment.html

If one is to debate or bitch about the process of impeachment then maybe a little knowledge would help……(Hahahaha…..I know in the era of mass stupid knowledge the last thing these mental midgets need)…..

Does anyone know what the term “oversight” means?

(Look it up…I am sure you can use Google by now)

The Founders were concerned that there could be an “imperial president” if there were no oversight…..

I have a problem…I do not care whether Trump is convicted or not, my problem is the oath taken by people that have already made up their minds…..this will be a joke for late night TV….not a political exercise.

Watch This Blog!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Those Lovable Tyrants

We all hate the tyrants of the world and of history…like Hitler, Mussolini, Saddam, et al.

But did you know that there were “tyrants” that were actually loved by the people they held sway over.

That’s right a “lovable tyrant”.

According to Jean Kim, M.D.’s 2017 article in Psychology Today, “Why Do People Follow Tyrants?”, an effective tyrant recognizes and responds to certain fundamental human desires. The tyrant’s strength and authority may allow him or her to present himself or herself as a parental figure, caring for an entire nation. Sometimes the nation’s parental figure is also its adolescent. A tyrant’s willingness to transgress legal boundaries may also contribute to his or her appeal. Perhaps none of the rulers on this list are admirable, but all of them were (or, in some cases, are) very popular tyrants.

10.  Queen Elizabeth I

In a 2013 article written in honor of the birth of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s first child, George, Business Insider compiled a list of the 10 greatest monarchs in British history. Queen Elizabeth I was one of only three queens listed. It’s understandably tempting to laud or critique Queen Elizabeth by comparing her to contemporary female political figures. However, it’s equally important to remember she was beloved by her own subjects in her own time. She couldn’t possibly have been a feminist monarch — the concept of feminism didn’t exist in 16th century England — but she was certainly a popular one. Unlike her half-sister, the staunchly Catholic Queen Mary I of England, who charged nearly 300 English Protestants with heresy and burned them at the stake, the Protestant Queen Elizabeth I didn’t publicly persecute Catholics.

https://www.toptenz.net/these-tyrants-were-actually-beloved-by-their-people.php

Can you think of any that should be added to this article/list?

Not all authoritarians are hated….only the crazy ones (LOL)….

Learn Stuff!

Class Dismissed!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Could Germany Have Won WW2? Part 2

I started a “what if” history awhile bac k before the impeachment thing got to dominate the news…….and now that we are at a slow season with the process now would be a good time to continue…..

I had a history professor that enjoyed looking at history and envisioning an alternate outcome……my first post in case you have forgotten……https://lobotero.com/2019/12/17/could-germany-have-won-world-war-two-part-1/

Part two is about the German military of the day……

In our last article, we examined some of the actions that Germany might have taken to achieve its territorial objectives without having to fight the Western Powers of Britain, France and the United States of America in World War Two. Some of the most important ways for Germany to have won the war would have been to have waited until German industries had recovered from the limitations imposed by the Versailles Treaty to maximize Germany’s military potential. It would have entailed a more prudent utilization of Germany’s limited military-industrial resources, better organization and increased mobility of her army. Here are some examples:

Avoid war with Allies until 1941 or 1943

Due to the fact that the German rearmament program was not projected to be completed until 1943, Hitler expected the outbreak of war would not occur until then or until 1941 at the earliest. Accordingly, Hitler was completely caught off guard when Britain and France declared war against him on Sept. 3, 1939 over his invasion of Poland. Germany’s generals warned Hitler that the army was not ready for war in 1939. Not only were one-third of Germany’s army divisions still seriously underequipped, but there was a major shortage of officers due to the massive expansion of the German Army from seven to 103 divisions during a five year period. Due to the serious shortage of tanks armed with 37mm guns or above, the German Army was forced to employ 2,000 obsolete Panzer I and Panzer II training tanks which the Germans had never intended to use in war. While the punitive Treaty of Versailles did not end up accomplishing its purpose in keeping Germany economically destitute, militarily powerless, divided and downtrodden, let alone prevent a Second World War, its ban on Germany building tanks actually contribute toward Nazi Germany losing World War II.

https://www.realclearhistory.com/articles/2019/10/14/more_mobile_military_just_1_way_germany_could_have_won_454.html

Before you disagree please keep in mind that this is an exercise in alternative thinking…..not some way to promote the Nazi ideology.

Any thoughts?

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

The Dumbest Military Orders

I have heard some really stupid orders given by military commanders……I never understood why someone would order a bayonet charge when the enemy still had bullets…….and these are the 10 dumbest orders issued……

Obviously, soldiers have amongst the most dangerous jobs in the world. When it’s not the enemy, friendly fire, weather, or disease that gets them, their commanding officers step in to endanger them through stupidity.

Now imagine being one of the soldiers under the commanders who ordered things this stupid:

10. Build Those Defenses… Backwards!

The War: Mexican-American War, 1846

The Leader: General Gideon Pillow

Pillow was appointed general because he was a friend with then President James Polk from when then practiced law together, so the likelihood he would do something really embarrassing was pretty high from square one. During the war, his most notorious mistake took place when he was stationed at a Mexican village called Camargo. There, he ordered entrenchments built, but had them built so awkwardly that the defenses were backwards, leaving his troops exposed to the enemy.

The incident would have been the most embarrassing incident of his career, but he seemed determined to top it. In 1847, Pillow wrote letters to Washington crediting himself with winning the war, rather than commanding General Winfield Scott; something so blatantly treacherous and false he was arrested for it. He was called back to active service during the American Civil War (luckily for the Union, he fought for the South). There, the most significant thing he did was lose a fortress with 12,000 soldiers to General Grant in 1862. In 1863, he managed to top even that by his actions at the Battle of Stony Creek: one of his subordinate generals found him hiding behind a tree instead of leading his soldiers. (Source: southernhistory.net)

https://www.toptenz.net/top-10-dumbest-orders-in-military-history.php

If you know of other equally stupid orders then please share….

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Thomas Paine In Paris

I guess it is no secret that I am a fan of Thomas Paine…he did more to establish the United States than many of our so-called Founding Fathers.

I have written many times about Thomas Paine……just a couple of my posts…..

https://lobotero.com/2009/06/08/thank-you-thomas-paine/

https://lobotero.com/2010/07/04/thomas-paine-the-father-of-the-u-s-of-a/

And then there is everybody’s hero, George Washington…..a person that I do not think should be held to such high esteem…..he should be known as the first president but then that is about all the accolades I will give him.

But to me the highest form of political cowardice was when Washington, the man not the city, ignored Paine’s pleas for help when he was arrested in Paris in 1793.

On December 28, 1793, at the height of the Reign of Terror in France, Paris police rousted Thomas Paine in the cold hours before dawn, arrested him as a “foreign conspirator” and locked him in a wet, 10-by-8-foot cellar in Luxembourg Prison. The only light came from cracks in a boarded-up window. Paine was sure the guillotine awaited him.

Citizen Thomas Paine, whose pamphlet Common Sense helped ignite the American Revolution, was an enthusiastic early supporter of the French Revolution. He received a hero’s welcome when he arrived in Paris in 1792 and was even granted honorary French citizenship and a seat in the National Convention, the body charged with writing a constitution for the new republic. But Paine angered Maximilien Robespierre and other Jacobin extremists when he urged the Convention to spare the life of the deposed French king, Louis XVI. Instead, Jacobins brandished the king’s severed head in front of a cheering crowd. Then they proceeded to round up thousands of suspected counterrevolutionaries who, Paine observed, fell “as fast as the guillotine could cut their heads off.” Now they’d come for him, too.

Thomas Paine’s Revolutionary Reckoning

Of course there are some the dispute the reason why Washington refused to help Paine…..I have heard many from religious to economic…..it matters NOT to me….Paine was the soul of the Revolution and in as such this country owed him all its support and assistance when needed.

But instead it was possibly divine providence that saved Paine….matters not for it WAS NOT the president of the United States.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

People You Have Never Heard Anything About

The first weekend of the new year, 2020, and I thought I would just post on some people from history that you may have never heard of but did have an effect……

Fame is a curious thing. Two people will devote their lives to working toward the same world changing goal, with one gaining global recognition while the other slides into obscurity. So what makes one person famous while the other remains an unknown?

Good PR is often a part of it, of course. Other times people suffer from bad timing, and some are just overlooked by historians and the media for whatever reason, rendering their accomplishments and deeds largely ignored by the general public. So who are these historical “coulda-beens”? Well, it’s funny you should ask…

https://www.toptenz.net/10-people-youve-never-heard-of-who-changed-the-world.php

Here is an interesting thought….there is still hope for you and I in the big picture we call history…..we could make a difference….but that will depend on your desire.

Class Dismissed!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”