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[[EDITOR'S NOTE: Unless otherwise noted, historical items appear courtesy of longtime Nevada reporter Dennis Myers' Poor Denny's Almanac [PDA]. Items highlighted in blue are of interest to labor in particular and seekers of justice in general. Copyright © 2008 Dennis Myers.]]
UPDATE FRIDAY 8-1-2008, 1:02 p.m. PDT, 20:02 GMT/CUT/SUT
For Immediate Release
August 1, 2008
For More Information:
Statement from Southern Nevada Building and Construction Trades Council Secretary/Treasurer Steve Ross Regarding the Financial Reorganization of Boyd Gamings Echelon Project
Las Vegas, Nevada - Today, Boyd Gaming announced a financial reorganization of Echelon which will have the effect of delaying the construction timeline of the project by about a year. [EDITOR'S NOTE: The Echelon project is a major development at Las Vegas Blvd. South and Convention Center Drive on the site of the venerable Stardust Hotel-Casino which was destroyed to make way for the new resort. The project is about one-quarter complete and will be delayed until at least 2011. Stoppage of the $4.8 billion project may idle as many as 800 skilled construction workers.]
Boyd contacted me to inform me that due to the difficult environment in today's capital markets, as well as weak economic conditions, that they have decided to delay their Echelon project on the Las Vegas Strip. They relayed to me an expectation to resume construction in three to four quarters, assuming credit market conditions and the economic outlook improves.
The credit crisis on Wall Street continues to have devastating ramifications on Main Street. Working families in Southern Nevada are facing the biggest housing crisis in a generation, at the same time that energy and food costs are skyrocketing, and now, thousands of good paying jobs with benefits are in jeopardy.
We will be spending the next couple of weeks looking to find new jobs for displaced workers in Southern Nevada. If any displaced worker has any questions, I urge them to contact their union halls directly, or to call the Southern Nevada Building and Construction Trades Council at (702) 452-8799.
Samuel Adams/August 1, 1776: Driven from every corner of the earth, Freedom of Thought and the Right of Private Judgment in matters of conscience direct their course to this happy country as their last asylum.
On Aug. 1, 1861, at the head of a force of 250 men, Confederate Captain John Baylor defeated a larger union force and took Fort Fillmore in New Mexico Territory, claiming New Mexico south of the 34th parallel, declaring a Confederate Territory of New Mexico and establishing a capital at Mesilla where he governed as military governor; in 1873 in Pioche, Nevada, Morgan Courtney and B.H. Kistle were both killed in separate incidents, with both killers acquitted even George McKinney, who ambushed Courtney and shot him in the back; in 1876 as the nation celebrated the centennial of the revolution, Colorado was admitted to the union, becoming known as the Centennial State; in 1887, someone upriver from Reno or possibly at Lake Tahoe was changing the flow of the Truckee, undercutting the generation of electric power by the Electic Power Company for Reno; in 1908, Nevada Democratic chair John Considine launched an initiative petition drive to abolish the anti-labor state police; in 1914, four days after Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia, Europe tumbled into war in an appalling display of power politics that led to a lethel and pointless world war Germany and Russia declared war on each other, Germany invaded Luxembourg as a first step toward invading France (in a few days France, Belgium and England all added declarations of war against Austria, Hungary and Germany and Germany invaded Belgium); in 1931 in Washington, the U.S. Treasury Department awarded the contract for construction of a federal building in Las Vegas to Plains Construction Company of Pampa, Texas on its bid of $337,000; in 1939, Las Vegas chamber of commerce members were upset to hear rumors that gas station owners in Cedar City, St. George, and Mesquite were issuing "dire warnings" to Las Vegas-bound drivers about the desert heat in order to get them to buy dry ice, water bags, and "cooling machines" for their cars; in 1942, Jerry Garcia was born, in San Francisco, naturally; in 1944, Anne Frank wrote in her diary "[I] keep on trying to find a way of becoming what I would like to be, and what I could be, if...there weren't any other people living in the world", after which the diary went silent and she was never heard from again, dying at Bergen-Belsen at age 15; in 1953, U.S. Senator George Malone of Nevada gave President Eisenhower a money clip with a silver dollar stamped at the Carson City Mint in 1890, the year of Eisenhower's birth; in 1960, The Twist by Chubby Checker was released; in 1961, the amusement park Six Flags Over Texas opened in Arlington, Texas; in 1962, President Kennedy urged women to check their medicine cabinets for baby-deforming thalidomide and to turn in any supplies they found, and he urged Congress to enact pending legislation that "will allow for immediate removal from the market of a new drug where there is an immediate hazard to public health"; in 1962, Utah scientist Robert Pendleton charged the Utah Health Department with not acting quickly to prevent distribution of milk tainted by fallout from Nevada atomic testing; in 1964, Vietnam (accurately) accused the U.S. and the Saigon regime of attacking northern coastal and island installations, prompting Vietnam to retaliate on August 2 against the U.S. destroyer Maddox, a retaliation that President Johnson falsely described as a provocation in order to (successfully) obtain authorization for war from Congress; in 1971 in one of the major natural disasters of the 20th century, Vietnam's Red River flooded, killing 100,000 people, a weather event that got little attention because the war prevented its study by world scientists (it is on the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration list of the most important 20th century climate events); in 1972, George Bush was suspended from flying by the Texas National Guard for failing to attend a medical exam, much like the rest of his national guard service; in 1973, American Graffiti, a George Lucas movie with an astonishing cast of future stars (Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, Paul Le Mat, Charles Martin Smith, Cindy Williams, Candy Clark, Mackenzie Phillips, Bo Hopkins, Harrison Ford, Kathleen Quinlan, Terry McGovern, Debralee Scott, Joe Spano, Kay Lenz, Susan Richardson, Suzanne Somers, but not Mark Hamill, who answered a casting call for the film) that had been rejected by 20th Century Fox, Paramount, American International, Columbia and United Artists before Universal accepted it, was released into theatres, going on to earn 90 times its $1,250,000 budget (the original director's version was nearly twice as long as the film released into theatres); in 1995, Westinghouse purchased CBS and the business-friendly Clinton administration raised no antitrust objections; in 1997, Boeing purchased McDonnell-Douglas, a deal the Clinton administration eventually approved (President Clinton threatened trade sanctions against the European Union if it moved against the acquisition he made clear that he was prepared to put the full weight of the Government behind the Boeing Company's $14 billion takeover of the McDonnell Douglas Corporation," reported The New York Times, something he never did for workers); in 2002, a special session of the Nevada Legislature, called to deal with medical malpractice issues after doctors at a Las Vegas trauma center went on strike, ended at 4:27 in the morning.
UPDATE THURSDAY 7-31-2008, 9:15 p.m. PDT, 04:15 GMT/CUT/SUT August 1, 2008 On this date in 1684 by some accounts, a conference was held in Albany to negotiate differences between whites and Cayugas, Oniedas, Mohawks and others about white intrusions into Native lands; in 1878, the Sacramento Bee suggested that with the growth of farming along Nevada rivers, "In a few years it may be that Nevada will be independent of California in this line. She can do nothing, of course, without irrigation, but she is bending her energies rapidly in that direction."; in 1905, a "phenomenal find", "easily the richest gold strike ever made in the state of Nevada, and one the story of which reads like a tale of the Arabian nights" was made in Olinghouse canyon; in 1912, unable to stomach the distribution of more films of heavyweight champion Jack Johnson beating white boxers, Congress outlawed the interstate shipment of fight films; in 1915 in Santa Monica, California, police said a son in law of former U.S. Senator John Jones of Nevada, a prominent banker whose name they declined to release, had been threatened by the Black Hand; in 1919, chemist, Italian resistance fighter, Auschwitz prisoner 174517, author, and poet Primo Levi was born in Turin (see below); in 1920, it was reported that the Santa Fe Railroad had applied to railroad commissions in California and Nevada to discontinue service between Goffs, California, and Searchlight, Nevada; in 1922, the Nevada Board of Regents appointed Laura Ambler to be an English instructor, in which position she launched the University of Nevada's first journalism instruction; in 1942, the Japanese, which a year earlier had occupied Indo-China and obtained a lease from the collaborationist colonial Vichy regime for a base at Haiphong, reached agreement with Vichy for additional bases; in 1942, what may well have been the first photograph of Vietnam to appear in a Reno newspaper was printed in the Nevada State Journal, an aerial view of Haiphong where the Japanese were building a base under a lease from the Vichy collaborationist government of France (which had colonized Indo-China); in 1968, The Beatles began three days of work on recording Hey Jude, their first recording at Trident studio; in 1975, former Teamsters Union president Jimmy Hoffa vanished, never to be seen again; in 2002, John Paul II canonized (conferred sainthood on) 16th century Nahuatl farmer Juan Diego, though there is substantial uncertainty about whether Diego ever existed: "Religious and indigenous scholars also reject the existence of Juan Diego, saying the church's official version is not supported by any documentary evidence. According to [Mexican theologian Jorge] Erdely and other experts, the Vatican has gone to extraordinary lengths to promote Juan Diego's canonization in order to preserve the centerpiece of its strategy for the Americas. Though Juan Diego is not the first imaginary person to be made a saint, previous cases date to earlier times when the process of canonization was less strict." (St. Petersburg Times).
Is anything sadder than a train
That leaves when it's supposed to,
That has only one voice,
Only one route?
There's nothing sadder.
Except perhaps a cart horse,
Shut between two shafts
And unable even to look sideways.
Its whole life is walking.
And a man? Isn't a man sad?
If he lives in solitude a long time,
If he believes time has run its course,
A man is a sad thing too.
January 17, 1946
UPDATE THURSDAY 7-30-2008, 12:46 a.m. PDT, 07:46 GMT/CUT/SUT On this date in 1863, six months after the Bear River Massacre in Idaho, in which a U.S. Army unit massacred 350 people in a Shoshone Village, the Treaty of Box Elder was signed to insure that "a firm and perpetual peace shall be henceforth maintained between the said bands and the United States" (several years later, the U.S. encouraged the tribe to move onto the Fort Hall reservation in violation of an 1869 treaty reserving it to the Bannocks); in 1903 in response to anger in Reno, Floriston Pulp and Paper Company exec B.J. Bither said his company was not polluting the Truckee River and would not do it again; in 1922, Reno had a new isolation hospital for treatment of infectious diseases, located alongside the county hospital on Mill Street; in 1931, several days after Murch Brothers Construction of St. Louis made the low bid on a contract for construction of a federal building in Las Vegas, another bid which had been postmarked by the deadline but long delayed in the mail arrived from Plains Construction Company of Pampa, Texas; in 1939, former Massachusetts governor James Curley (who as a legendary mayor of Boston became known as the "Purple Shamrock" and entered folk culture as the thinly disguised main character of Edwin O'Connor's novel The Last Hurrah) arrived in Winnemucca on a two-week trip to inspect his holdings in the Ashdown mine (owned by the Curley Lucky Gold Corporation) in northern Humboldt County; in 1944, the 370th Regimental Combat Team, an African-American unit, disembarked at Naples, Italy; in 1957 on his second night as Tonight show host, Jack Paar introduced a new regular, Dody Goodman, who was so deft and witty and became so popular that he dropped her the next year (he said he felt "like the announcer on The Dody Goodman Show"); in 1966, Chip Taylor's Wild Thing by The Troggs hit number one on the Billboard chart (another version of the song, an oddball rendering by a Robert Kennedy imitator, was also released in 1966 by "Senator Bobby"); in 1990 at a Nevada Board of Regents meeting, after the regents approved leasing 493 acres of university land in Churchill County to the Fallon Mining Company for mining, UNR student president Jason Geddes asked that the money earned be used for internships for mining students; in 1996, the Atlanta Journal Constitution unskeptically used a leak from a law enforcement source that named Richard Jewell as a suspect in the 1996 summer olympics bombing, aiming at Jewell a media firestorm that convicted him in the court of public opinion.
UPDATE TUESDAY 7-29-2008, 06:45 a.m. PDT, 13:45 GMT/CUT/SUT On this date in 1874, Carson City's Appeal theorized that fish were dying in Washoe Lake because a Reno newspaper editor had walked across the bridge over the lake; in 1878, newspaperman Don Marquis, who created "archy", the newspaper office cockroach who used the typewriter to write poetry after hours (but wrote all in lower case because he could not operate the shift key) and "mehitabel", an alley cat who was Cleopatra in a past life, was born in Walnut, Illinois; in 1901, the Washoe County Medical Association was founded; in 1905 Clara Bow, the actor who was the archetype of the 1920s flapper, who later married cowboy actor Rex Bell and lived on his Searchlight, Nevada ranch, was born in a Brooklyn tenement; in 1914, U.S. Secretary of War Lindley Garrison ordered the deportation of Newspaper Enterprise Association reporter Fred L. Boalt, who had reported that a U.S. naval officer had applied the "law of flight" to Mexican prisoners (shooting prisoners while "escaping"), which the army claimed was inaccurate; in 1919 at McGill and Ruth, Nevada, members of the Industrial Workers of the World and the Western Federation of Miners struck the mines; in 1934, the Willows night club on South Main Street near Fifth in Las Vegas was destroyed by fire; in 1944 after a night in jail in Antioch, California, where she was arrested for "hanging around" town, actress Frances Farmer departed with her father for Nevada Hot Springs in Lyon County, Nevada; in 1952, the U.S. Army announced that because Reno businesses refused to serve African-American soldiers stationed at Stead Air Force Base, the army was starting bus service between Stead and Sacramento for black soldiers to use for R&R; in 1952, the U.S. Reconstruction Finance Corporation (a federal agency created during the Hoover administration to provide loans and credit to businesses) ordered the sale at auction of the Tahoe Biltmore at Crystal Bay; in 1959, after presiding over the Colorado River Commission proceedings, Governor Charles Russell relaxed by traveling to Elko for the celebration surrounding the premiere of local rancher Bing Crosby's movie Here Comes the Groom, which was also attended by U.S. Senator George Malone and U.S. Representative Walter Baring; in 1963, Blowin' In The Wind by Peter, Paul, and Mary was released; in 1968, Light My Fire by The Doors hit number one on the Billboard chart; in 1975, President Ford visited Auschwitz; in 2004, Arlo Guthrie appeared in concert at the Bartley Ranch in Reno.
UPDATE MONDAY 7-28-2008, 8:13 p.m. PDT, 03:13 TUESDAY 7-29-2008 GMT/CUT/SUT Nevada AFL-CIO Executive Secretary-Treasurer Danny Thompson has put out an emergency call for last-minute entries for the 2008 Arnold-Jones-Evans Scholarship Essay Contest. Three $3,000 scholarships are at stake for 2008 high school graduates who are children of current union members and plan to attend an accredited school this fall. Click here for complete info and entry forms. Hurry deadline is August 1.
UPDATE MONDAY 7-28-2008, 6:44 a.m. PDT, 13:44 GMT/CUT/SUT
George Bush/July 28, 2003: And the other lesson is that there are people who can't stand what America stands for, and desire to conflict great harm on the American people.
On this date in 1864, the second Nevada constitutional convention ended (it was just barely the 28th five minutes past midnight; the convention actually completed its work on the 27th); in 1868, Secretary of State William Seward proclaimed the ratification of the fourteenth amendment to the U.S. Constitution, imposing constitutional limitations on state governments, insured a single type of citizenship, and prohibiting denial of rights without due process, an amendment so sweeping that it has been called the second U.S. Constitution (for several decades, the U.S. Supreme Court voided much of its impact, then began reversing itself and let it take effect); in 1903, an Elko constable notified law officers in Madera, California, that he had located Madera fugitive Jack Barnes working on a local ranch and could apprehend him if the Californians wished (Barnes was arrested and returned to California after Madera County promised to pay the expenses); in 1906, marketing specialist Simon Litman of the University of California said in Philadelphia that San Francisco would not again be destroyed by earthquake because new structures were being made earthquake proof; in 1930 in Reno, Cecil Creel appointed to be one of the members of a federal appraisals panel said appraisal would soon begin in St. Thomas, Moapa Valley, and other regions of the land that would be flooded when Boulder Dam was built; in 1935, Joseph Neal Jr., who has served as Nevada Senate majority floor leader, president pro tempore, acting governor, and at his retirement was tied for longevity of service as a Nevada state senator, was born in Mounds, Louisiana; in 1945, in heavy fog, a U.S. Army B-25 bomber was piloted by an experienced pilot down Manhattan's 42d Street, banked onto Fifth Avenue, dodged several skyscrapers, and plowed at an estimated 200 miles an hour into the 79th floor of the Empire State Building, exploding inside the offices of the National Catholic Welfare Conference, killing 14 people (two women whose elevator dropped more than 70 floors survived; one of the plane's engines came out the other side of the building and landed on a 12-story building); in 1956, Elvis' I Want You, I Need You, I Love You hit number one on the Billboard chart; in 1967, President Johnson established the National Commission on Civil Disorders (whose report, submitted on February 29 1968, he ignored); in 2002, on a trip to Toronto for a youth conference, John Paul II failed to apologize for the clergy sex abuse scandal, saying only "The harm done by some priests to the young and vulnerable fills us all with a deep sense of sadness and shame, but think of the vast majority of dedicated and generous priests whose only wish is to serve and do good."
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UPDATE SUNDAY 7-27-2008, 10:24 p.m. PDT, 05:24 7-28-2008 GMT/CUT/SUT On this date in 1916, German officials in Belgium executed Captain Charles Fryatt of Britain after a strange court martial in which Fryatt was prosecuted and convicted of using his ship to defend against the German u-boat that was attacking him; in 1923, John Dillinger of Mooresville, Indiana (later a famed bank robber), joined the U.S. Navy in an effort to escape the consequences of making off with a car from his Quaker church, serving on the U.S.S. Utah for about a month before walking off the ship and never returning; in 1933, the World Economic Conference in London (the U.S. had several delegates, including U.S. Senator Key Pittman of Nevada) collapsed after the new U.S. president, Franklin Roosevelt, issued an intemperate message on the conference; in 1934, Minnesota Governor Floyd Olsen declared martial law in Minneapolis in response to police opening fire on unarmed union pickets and to a rejection by employers of a strike settlement accepted by teamsters, imposing limited press restrictions and a ban on parking in the business district while milk, ice, and grocery trucks were under guard; in 1939, Las Vegas associates of Frontier and 91 Clubs owner (and former Los Angeles police officer) Guy McAfee denied a report in the Los Angeles Herald Examiner that he had gone broke in Las Vegas and would withdraw from the gambling city; in 1954, the Guatemalan government of Jacobo Arbenz Guzmán, elected with a 1951 landslide of 65 percent of the vote, was overthrown by CIA-paid and -trained mercenaries, leading to four decades of vicious military juntas that waged a genocidal war against the indigenous Mayan Indians and against political opponents; in 1960, Vice-President Richard Nixon was nominated for president by the Republican National Convention in Chicago; in 1974, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee voted to recommend that the House of Representatives impeach President Nixon; in 1992, a $7.5 million renovation of the Thomas/Mack Center at UNLV was announced.
UPDATE SATURDAY 7-26-2008, 12:34 p.m. PDT, 19:34 GMT/CUT/SUT On this date in 1775, a year before independence, Congress created the Post Office; in 1906 at a board of directors meeting in Boston, the Guggenheims gained control of the Nevada Consolidated Copper Company and its railroad, the Nevada and Northern Railway Company; in 1921, masked men entered a public dance pavilion at Spring Lake Park in Texarkana and kidnapped Gordon Harrison, the African-American orchestra conductor; in 1921, the Rio Grande, boundary between Mexico and the U.S., kept changing its course, and on this day El Paso's Acting Mayor R.C. Semple led a search party to find the river and failed; in 1938, the U.S. Public Works Administration was holding up funding for construction of an engineering building, an arts and sciences building, and a gymnasium at the University of Nevada until the state took some required legislative actions, which raised a question of whether a special session of the Nevada Legislature was needed; in 1944, PFC Jack Lichtenberg of Reno was missing in action in France (in November his family would be notified that he was a German prisoner of war); in 1948, President Truman desegregated the U.S. military; in 1952, Democratic presidential nominee Adlai Stevenson and other party leaders chose segregationist John Sparkman to be the vice-presidential nominee; in 1952, the Howard Hughes organization announced its continuing interest in building a plant in the Red Rock canyon area west of Las Vegas as soon as a land transfer could be arranged; in 1956, Egyptian President Nasser reclaimed the Suez Canal from British management, causing Israel, France and Britain to launch a war against Egypt, but the British public revolted against their government's action, forcing British Prime Minister Anthony Eden to call off the military adventure and later resign; in 1959, the first U.S. nuclear reactor meltdown took place at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory, a Boeing facility 30 miles north of downtown Los Angeles, after a reactor on July 13 underwent a power "excusion" or "criticality accident", was first shut down, then was restarted without a determination of what caused the problem, and was permitted to operate for several weeks, was shut down again, and collected radioactive material was slowly released into the atmosphere (from 260 to 459 times the amount released at Three Mile Island) without danger levels being monitored, possibly exposing nearly two thousand people to radiation; in 1963, the Las Vegas Review-Journal devoted two full pages to a map of 28 new housing developments around the valley; in 1968, a day after he organized the six losing Saigon presidential candidates into a political group, Truong Dinh Dzu who as a peace candidate came in second in the "election" to Nguyen Van Thieu was sentenced to five years at hard labor for currency violations and bad check charges (he was released after five months because of public protests); in 1969, a two-day strike and lockout at 12 Las Vegas casinos ended with an agreement between the casinos and the Operating Engineers and Teamsters; in 1997, President Clinton announced at Lake Tahoe that the Forest Service would return 350 acres to the Washo tribe for a cultural center; in 2005, Margaret Goodman of Las Vegas resigned as chief ringside physician for Nevada state boxing regulators in protest against the state's failure to adopt stringent safety procedures for the ring.
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UPDATE FRIDAY 7-25-2008, 11:17 a.m. PDT, 18:17 GMT/CUT/SUT
George W. Bush/July 25, 2003: Security is the essential roadblock to achieving the road map to peace.
On this date in 1861, the Crittenden Resolution, defining the purpose of the Civil War as preservation of the union rather than the abolition of slavery, was passed by Congress; in 1866, an expedition was formed at Fort Churchill, Nevada under the command of Major R.S. Williamson to explore little-known areas of Nevada, Idaho, southern Oregon and northern California; in 1868, Henry Worthington of Nevada was appointed U.S. minister (ambassador) to Uruguay; in 1934, Nazis began the Juliputsch (July Putsch) in Austria, assassinating fascist Chancellor Engelbert Dollfuss, and in Germany Hitler rushed to the Austrian border, but the coup failed in part because Mussolini assembled troops on the Italo-Austrian border to attack any German units that invaded Austria; in 1949, Civil Aeronautics Authority official William Howard met with Yerington officials about plans to improve the airfield so it could handle Bonanza Airlines and other carriers planes; in 1952, Democratic party bosses terrified by the prospect of the presidential nomination of economic populist Estes Kefauver, who had swept the presidential primaries (including defeating President Truman in the New Hampshire primary), managed to swing the nomination to Adlai Stevenson on the third ballot; in 1952, Nevada highway officials announced a plan to reconfigure the Las Vegas/St. George highway to cut nearly an hour off the travel time; in 1963, a Sacramento firm purchased Sundown Town, an amusement park in the hills between the Mount Rose highway and Washoe City that was built by Buster Keaton, Jr., and later burned down; in 1972 at Fillmore East, Neil Young appeared with Crosby Stills Nash for the first time; in 1970, 25 or 6 to 4 by Chicago, a song about the difficulty of writing a song, was released; in 2001, a London bound American Airlines jet out of Los Angeles made an emergency landing safely in Las Vegas after the pilot suffered a midair heart attack (the pilot was hospitalized and survived); in 2005, Sony BMG agreed to a $10 million fine for payola to radio stations to boost airplay, the first success in an investigation by New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer that was then expected to turn to Vivendi Universal, the Warner Music Group and the EMI Group after Spitzer subpoenaed records of Clear Channel Communications, Emmis Communications, and other radio chains.
UPDATE THURSDAY 7-24-2008, 12:15 a.m. PDT, 07:15 GMT/CUT/SUT
University of Nevada Regent and film critic Howard Rosenberg on Barbwire.TV Friday, July 25. Tune in, turn on and tell a friend.
BREAKING NEWS: Nevada Supreme Court upholds term limits, boots Rosenberg and Woodbury
More in the Sunday Barbwire: Vote for Rosenberg anyway, dammit
On July 24, 1783, Simón José Antonio de la Santísima Trinidad Bolívar y Ponte Palacios y Blanco was born in Caracas on the continent where he would lead the fight for liberation of the nations now called Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Panama, Venezuela and Bolivia (this last named for him); on this date in 1873, a crowd, including Governor Charles Stevenson, gathered at the State Insane Asylum to see the start of use of an electric generating plant (Alf Doten: "The Asylum building, as well as the residences of the Superintendent and family, glowed brilliantly with numerous incandescent electric lights, many of the glass shades of which being of different colors, gave a very beautiful and pleasing effect."); in 1911, archeologist Hiram Bingham discovered Machu Piccu, though its location was not a secret to the inhabitants of the region; in 1931, the earliest known tornado to touch down in Nevada, where they are very rare, was seen in Humboldt County; in 1936, law enforcement officials were preparing to drain Honey Creek Mill Pond near Pinckney, Michigan, to try to find the bodies of more murder victims of the Black Legion, a right wing terrorist group that operated in the middle west; in 1939, thirty-seven days before Hitler invaded Poland, the lead story on the front page of the Las Vegas Review-Journal was a United Press dispatch headlined across eight columns: "EUROPE TO DODGE WAR FOR 1939, EXPERTS SAY"; in 1938, Artie Shaw recorded Cole Porter's (Don't Let Them) Begin the Beguine (the Beguine was a Caribbean dance); in 1943, British bombers began nighttime firebombing of Hamburg, Germany, specifically designed to cause civilian casualties, resulting after several days in firestorms that left 50,000 civilians dead and a million homeless; in 1951 with Las Vegas Review-Journal publisher Don Reynolds taking a vacation around the world, the newspaper's staff was forced to publish their boss' banal observations on world affairs, such as today's commentary on the Korean truce talks; in 1952, as Democratic Party bosses gained ground in their effort to stop the presidential candidacy of Estes Kefauver by promoting Adlai Stevenson, U.S. Senator Pat McCarran of Nevada said that "when you check into the Stevenson reports you find they don't have any basis in fact" and argued that the Stevenson movement was losing momentum; in 1956, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis performed in public for the last time, at the Copacabana in New York City; in 1959 in a debate in the kitchen of a model U.S. tract home on display at an exhibition in Moscow, U.S. Vice President Richard Nixon was verbally slapped around by Soviet General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev, with Nixon at one point telling Khrushchev that the USSR might be ahead of the US in rocket development, but the US was ahead of the USSR in color television (John Kennedy: "Mr. Nixon may be very experienced in kitchen debates. So are a great many other married men I know."); in 1959, the Nevada Legislative Commission named Reuben Zubrow of the University of Colorado to head what would turn out to be an influential study of the state's tax structure; in 1959, two thousand Little League players, parents and fans gathered for a breakfast in the parking lot of Washoe Market at the corner of Vine and Fifth Streets in Reno; in 1963, in an effort to prevent the embarrassment of a civil rights march against Las Vegas' segregated casinos, the Sahara broke the solid phalanx among casinos and agreed to talks with the local NAACP chapter headed by Marion Bennett; in 1967, Surrealistic Pillow by Jefferson Airplane went gold; in 1969, eight years after John Kennedy set the goal "before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the Earth", the first men on the moon returned to earth where, on board the USS Hornet, President Nixon engaged in hyperbole that offended religions around the world and amused historians: "I was thinking, as you know, as you came down, and we knew it was a success, and it had only been 8 days, just a week, a long week, that this is the greatest week in the history of the world since the creation"; in 1971, John D. Loudermilk's Indian Reservation (The Lament of the Cherokee Reservation Indian) by The Raiders hit number one on the Billboard chart and went on to become the biggest selling single in the history of Columbia Records; in 1984, the body of a nine year old girl, Dawn Hamilton, was found in Rosedale, Maryland, leading to the prosecution, conviction (based on the identification of two teen boys), imposition of a death penalty, and imprisonment of a 23 year-old man, Kirk Bloodsworth, who spent nine years in prison (during which he was repeatedly assaulted hit in the head with a sock filled with batteries, stabbed in the calf, and hit and fractured in the clavicle), tried a second time and again convicted, until being exonerated by DNA testing and pardoned, with prosecutor Ann Brobst making a point of refusing to apologize (the real killer was serving in the same prison with Bloodsworth and later pleaded guilty to the Hamilton murder); in 1990, the Judas Priest trial, in which the rock band was sued by the parents of two boys who attempted suicide (one of who died) got underway in Reno, dominated by junk science and Judge Jerry Whitehead's claim that subliminal messages (in this case, imaginary ones) are not protected by the first amendment.
Nevada State Journal/July 25, 1896:
Senator Stewart Makes a Rousing Speech.
BRYAN AND SEWALL.
The Convention Nominates Them by Acclamation.
ST. LOUIS, July 24 It was 10:11 o'clock when Chairman St. John called the Silver Convention to order. Rev. Dr. Court led in prayer.... By invitation Senator Stewart of Nevada addressed the convention. He said that Wall street was represented by a powerful lobby at the Chicago Convention, but could do nothing with the honest Democratic patriots. He made a plea for harmony among the silver forces and predicted victory. He said he went to Chicago with little hope that a silver platform would be adopted, but he was agreeably disappointed. There never was a more patriotic band of men on earth than the delegates who controlled the Chicago convention. The Wall street corporation money was no use there. At the mention of Bland's name, the delegations arose, cheered, shouted and flourished umbrellas and flags.
The Senator said that Bryan's convention speech was the greatest oration in history. "I know William J. Bryan," he said, "he believes what we believe. He is as true to his principles as the needle to the pole."
...Under the resolution adopted yesterday the roll of States was called to find out how many old soldiers occupied seats as delegates. The poll showed 109 Union veterans, 18 Confederate veterans, and 4 Mexican war veterans.
... Judge Scott of Omaha was called to the platform. He said, Oh God send pestilence and disease and vermin and war and famine among us if you will, but in thy good providence, Oh God, deliver us from another four years of oppression under Grover Cleveland."
He called for three cheers for Bryan, which were given.... The convention adjourned until 3:30 p.m. when the rules were suspended and Bryan nominated by acclamation. Sewall was also nominated by acclamation for Vice President.
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UPDATE WEDNESDAY 7-23-2008, 12:55 p.m. PDT, 19:55 GMT/CUT/SUT Tahoe Shakespeare Festival musicians haven't been paid after termination. Non-union rats imported from New York City.
The Musicians' Union Local 368 in Nevada entered into a Collective Bargaining Agreement with the Shakespeare Festival last May for performing an original play called Cambio.
Following Monday's performance, Jan Powell the Artistic Director of the Shakespeare Festival fired the band even though the contract did not allow for this and offered the band one day's pay in compensation for the firing. Please realize that all of the players involved have more than 30 years of professional experience and collectively have played 1000's of shows.
The cast consisted of only one professional and a few that had graduated college recently. For the most part, the actors are amateurs. The gentleman that composed the music only had a copy of the CD to present as music so the conductor was hired to score the music from the CD. Currently the musicians have not been paid for rehearsals and the conductor has not been paid for the arrangements. They claim the checks are in the mail as of last Thursday but the musicians have yet to see a check for the date that was performed.
I have called these folks and sent letters. Only two musicians have been paid thus far. We are in touch with the International Board of Executives and are currently working with a labor law attorney.
Thanks for all that you do and take care.
Paul M. January
American Federation of Musicians
Local 368, Reno Nevada
P.O. Box 7398 * Reno, NV 89510
(775) 329-7995 * Fax (866) 539-1871
UPDATE: Thursday, July 24, 2008, 12:45 p.m. PDT, 19:45 GMT/SUT/CUT
The Shakespeare Festival's Attorney, Geno Menchetti, (says) they want to settle this today if possible. I am going to go up to the Festival and pick up the checks hopefully this afternoon. I will stay in touch. Also I received a call from the Local Stagehands Union and if we picket, they will honor the line. Great folks as far as I am concerned!
Thanks again for all that you do. Take care and I'll talk to you soon.
Paul M. January
American Federation of Musicians Local 368
UPDATE: Thursday, July 24, 2008, 6:01 p.m. PDT; 01:01 Friday, July 25, GMT/SUT/CUT
SHAKESPEARIAN FARCE: Tentative resolution to musicians beef with Tahoe festival
From the front page of the Friday, July 25, Daily Sparks Tribune
July 23, 2008, 11:06 PDT, 18:06 GMT
George W. Bush on Vladimir Putin/July 23, 2001: You saw the president yesterday. I thought he was very forward-leaning, as they say in diplomatic nuanced circles.
On this date in 1866, Congress enacted legislation creating the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit consisting of California, Oregon, and Nevada; in 1915 Reno's evening hours downtown became quieter when saloons complied with the city council's new prohibition on music in barrooms.; in 1934 a Colored Democratic Club was formed in Clark County; in 1934 Franklin Roosevelt campaign manager and U.S. Postmaster General James Farley dedicated Reno's new federal building and praised U.S. senators Key Pittman (lavishly) and Senator Patrick McCarran (minimally); in 1935 Las Vegas and Reno casino operators were hoping they would gain business from southern California after the Mexican government shut down border casinos in Agua Caliente; in 1952 amid a nationwide heat wave, Las Vegas had the highest recorded temperature in the nation at 110˜and a major water shortage, with angry residents protesting Desert Inn Golf Course watering, the Las Vegas Land and Water Company predicting ten remaining days of water supply, and state water engineer Hugh Shamberger considering mingling sewer water with domestic supply; in 1957 the Nevada Supreme Court removed four regents (Cyril Bastian of Caliente, Grant Sawyer of Elko, N.E. Broadbent of Ely, and William Elwell of Las Vegas) from office because they were appointed by legislators in violation of the separation of powers, but did not overturn the law expanding the board of regents from five to nine members and said the governor could fill the vacancies, and Governor Charles Russell was expected to reappoint the four; in 1959 the Federal Communications Commission in Washington approved a change of ownership for Reno's KDOT Radio; in 1968 three days after they shut down the Pioneer Club in Las Vegas, state gambling regulators filed charges against the club for allegedly deceiving customers; in 1989 after overnight news reports declared Laurent Fignon the winner of the Tour de France on the assumption that no human could close the 50-second gap between Mignon and second placer Greg LeMond in the 15.5 miles still to run from Versailles to Paris, LeMond astonished television viewers around the world by finishing eight seconds ahead, his second Tour win (LeMond made the race with 37 shotgun pellets in his body, the aftermath of a 1987 hunting accident in which he was shot in the chest, putting him out of action for two years); in 2003 Josh Byers of Norwalk, California, former student body president at Reed High School in Sparks, died east of Baghdad in Iraq; in 2007 U.S. astronaut Clayton Anderson said "Our spaceship Earth is a beautiful place" during a space walk in which he dumped more than a half ton of debris into orbit over the earth.
July 22, 2008, 06:47 PDT, 13:47 GMT
George Bush/July 22, 2001: I know what I believe. I will continue to articulate what I believe and what I believe, I believe what I believe is right.
On this date in 1793, British explorer Alexander Mackenzie's expedition reached the Pacific Ocean near Vancouver, the first transcontinental crossing by a European that preceded Lewis and Clark by a decade; in 1868 the tracks of the Central Pacific reached Wadsworth, Nevada; in 1915 a flash flood caused by a cloudburst in the hills swept down near Dayton, Nevada, washing away a Native American encampment, irrigation ditches, and a railroad bridge abutment; in 1921 Susan Roop Arnold, daughter of Nevada provisional territorial governor Isaac Roop for whom the town of Susanville is named, died, probably in Susanville; in 1923 John Dillinger of Mooresville, Indiana enlisted in the U.S. Navy to escape a car theft charge; in 1933 a Saturday night dance at the Boulder City Legion Hall featured the Blue Cloud Colored Orchestra; in 1934 Manhattan Melodrama starring Myrna Loy, William Powell, and Clark Gable achieved a trivia benchmark when bank robber John Dillinger was shot dead in the street near Chicago's Biograph Theatre after seeing the movie; in 1939 Alan LeMay, later author of The Searchers and The Unforgiven, was married to Arlene Hoffman in Las Vegas with movie producer Jesse Lasky and his wife as witnesses; in 1946 Jewish terrorists bombed a wing of Palestine's King David Hotel in Jerusalem, killing a hundred people (a two-day Israeli "celebration" of the bombing in July 2006 was protested by the British government because it glorified "an act of terrorism which led to the loss of many lives" ); in 1953 Nevada's first television station, KLAS in Las Vegas, went on the air; in 1963, after a seven month battle over the efforts of Reynolds Electrical and Engineering and the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission to alter pay practices at the Nevada Test Site, a federal court ruled in favor of the labor unions protecting the workers at the site; in 1981, former Clark County superintendent of schools Kenny Guinn was selected to serve on the new Metropolitan Police Committee on Fiscal Affairs; in 1987 Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev, in an impressive reversal of position, said he was willing without conditions to negotiate a ban on intermediate-range nuclear missiles, opening the way for the intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty; in 2002 Mississippi jazz singer Marion Montgomery, who sang in Las Vegas lounges early in her career and became a familiar British television performer, died near London.
July 21, 2008, 06:56 PDT, 13:56 GMT On this date in 365, an earthquake in or around Crete generated a massive tsunami that caused Mediterranean shorelines to drop and rivers to flow backward, causing ships to run aground until the water levels returned and, when the tsunami reached shores, killing 5,000 Greeks and 700 Alexandrians (it is possible that another earthquake south of Spain caused a second tsunami, one that threw ships over buildings in Malaga [the date is probable, based on ancient records]); in 1864 Nevada supreme court justices George Turner and John North wired U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Salmon Chase in D.C.:
"Constitution defeated yesterday for purely local reasons people overwhelmingly loyal." ; in 1865 in a dispute over a gambling debt, Bill Hickok and Dave Tutt faced off in a gunfight in the street in Springfield, Missouri and Hickok killed Tutt; in 1878, the great workers song Eight Hours was published (see below); in 1918 German submarine U-156, offshore of Orleans, Mississippi, surfaced in view of sunbathers and began shelling a tug and barges, sinking the tug (U.S. planes that arrived on the scene dropped hand tools like screwdrivers and hammers on the sub); in 1934 Willis Ocker of Redding, California arrived in Beatty after walking 43 miles across Death Valley, reportedly the first person to have achieved the feat; in 1950 PFC Raymond Yoss of Nelson, Nevada was captured in Korea and held until after the armistice in 1953; in 1954, the "Final Declaration of the Geneva Conference" was approved providing for reunification of Vietnam and free elections, and U.S. observer Walter Bedell Smith promised the U.S.
"declares with regard to the aforesaid agreements and paragraphs that 'it will refrain from the threat or the use of force to disturb them'" and the U.S. then quickly invented the "nation" of South Vietnam to use force to prevent reunification and free elections; in 1965 to create the impression that he was considering all options, President Johnson began a week-long Vietnam policy review with civilian and military officials and other advisors on whether to escalate, though records and transcripts later disclosed that during the review he coaxed advisors into (in the words of historian Larry Berman) "giving him what they thought he wanted, rather than the truth" and that he placed "the burden of proof only on those who sought a way out of, and not into, the war"; in 1973 Jim Croce's Bad Bad Leroy Brown went to number one on the Billboard chart; in 2003 The Nevada Legislature, after a long stalemate in regular session and two special sessions, approved a $836 million tax increase by a 17-2 vote in the Senate and a 28-14 margin in the Assembly.
Lyrics by I.G. Blanchard, music by Rev. Jesse Jones
We mean to make things over, we are tired of toil for naught
With but bare enough to live on and ne'er an hour for thought.
We want to feel the sunshine and we want to smell the flowers
We are sure that God has willed it and we mean to have eight hours;
We're summoning our forces from the shipyard, shop and mill
Eight hours for work, eight hours for rest
Eight hours for what we will;
Eight hours for work, eight hours for rest
Eight hours for what we will.
The beasts that graze the hillside, and the birds that wander free,
In the life that God has meted, have a better lot than we.
Oh hands and hearts are weary, and homes are heavy with dole;
If our life's to be filled with drudgery, what need of a human soul.
Shout, shout the lusty rally, from shipyard, shop, and mill.
Ye deem they're feeble voices that are raised in labor's cause,
But bethink ye of the torrent, and the wild tornado's laws.
We say not toil's uprisnig in terror's shape will come,
Yet the world were wise to listento the monetary hum.
Soon, soon the deep toned rally shall all the nations thrill.
From factories and workshops in long and weary lines,
From all the sweltering forges, and from out the sunless mines,
Wherever toil is wasting the force of life to live
There the bent and battered armies come to claim what God doth give
And the blazon on the banner doth with hope the nation fill:
Hurrah, hurrah for labor, for it shall arise in might
It has filled the world with plenty, it shall fill the world with light
Hurrah, hurrah for labor, it is mustering all its powers
And shall march along to victory with the banner of Eight Hours.
Shout, shout the echoing rally till all the welkin thrill.
July 20, 2008, 11:20 a.m. PDT, 18:20 GMT/ CUT/SUT
Newsboys strike leader Kid Blink: Ain't ten cents worth as much to us as it is to Pulitzer and Hearst, who are millionaires? Well, I guess it is. If they can't spare it, how can we?
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On this date in 1878, Boston Corbett, the former soldier who claimed to have killed John Wilkes Booth, was reported to have attended a Pacific Coast Pioneers picnic at Bowers mansion; in 1899, prompted by a ten-cent price hike (50 to 60 cents) for a 100-newpaper bundle against the child labor newspaper sellers force, the Newsboys Strike of 1899 began against competitors Hearst and Pulitzer, driving newspaper circulation down by two thirds, spreading across the northeast and midwest, and resulting in an agreement for the newspapers to buy back unsold newspapers (these events were dramatized in the Christian Bale/Ann Margret musical Newsies); in 1918 the Churchill County Republican and Democratic parties held a joint meeting to try to see if a unified War Ticket could be formed in order to avoid "all discord and distraction incident to a partisan campaign when our united energies should be devoted to winning the war"; in 1926 the case of former Nevada alcohol prohibition director J.P. Donnelly, convicted for covering up the seizure of a truckload of booze, reached the U.S. Supreme Court; in 1933 the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported on economic development in Clark County: "One hundred twenty five 'girl entertainers,' neither licensed nor under any sort of supervision, are established along the Boulder dam highway, according to a survey made recently."; in 1936, a five-night Federal Theatre Project run of Macbeth, produced by John Houseman and directed by Orson Welles with an all-African-American cast, opened in Bridgeport, Connecticut; in 1952, a drive-in church on the Boulder highway outside Las Vegas held its first Sunday service; in 1963, Surf City by Jan and Dean hit number one on the Billboard chart; in 1968 a near riot erupted in Pasco, Washington, when police chief A.L. McKibbin kicked a group of young African-Americans out of city hall after they had been invited by police officers; in 2007 a blue-nosed Washington Post column by a Robin Givhan was devoted to something that few others saw U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton "display[ed] cleavage in a setting that does not involve cocktails and hor d'oeuvres" during a Senate floor speech, a display that escaped the notice of most others who saw only the normal conservative dress Clinton always wears (a relatively high cut blouse under a jacket), and the article created a firestorm of criticism of the Post (the Post's ombudsman, Deborah Howell, seemed to support Givhan, calling Clinton's outfit "provocative" and justifying the article's publication because "It was the most viewed story on the Web site all day.").
UPDATE SATURDAY 7-19-2008, 12:07 a.m. PDT, 07:07 GMT/CUT/SUT
George Bush to a British child who asked what the White House is like / July 19, 2001: It is white.
On this date in 1799, the Rosetta stone, a transcription in one Greek and two Egyptian languages of a Ptolemaic decree, was located in the Nile delta by French Army officer Pierre-François Bouchard, who found it as part of a wall that was being dismantled, and it was stolen by the French instead of being turned over to Egyptian officials (it was later seized from the French as war booty by the English, its return was demanded by Egypt in 2003 and negotiations for the return are now going on); in 1864 President Lincoln received a wire from Nevada: "Received constitutional amendment yesterday abolishing slavery our legislature ratified it immediately only two 2 dissenting [signed:] H G Blasdell Gov Nevada"; in 1878 a delegation of Piute chiefs that traveled to San Francisco to meet and sup with General Irwin McDowell, presumably at the Army's new Presidio facility, were back in Nevada; in 1879 in the street outside his Las Vegas, New Mexico, saloon, Doc Holliday and a former army scout named Mike Gordon had a gunfight, Gordon reportedly getting off the first shot, followed by Holliday, who killed Gordon; in 1899 U.S. Land Commissioner L.H. Wise reported that 788 allotments of eighty acres of farm land or 160 acres of grazing land had been allotted to Native Americans in Nevada, principally in Humboldt, Douglas and Churchill Counties; in 1918 U.S. servicepeople in Europe read in Stars and Stripes about the U.S. Senate campaigns of two women Jeanette Rankin of Montana and Anne Martin of Nevada, both Republicans (though Martin ended up running on an independent line after failing to win GOP support).; in 1919 the London Cenotaph designed by Edwin Lutyens was unveiled in Whitehall, constructed of stone and replacing an earlier wood and plaster Cenotaph (the structure is still the site of the annual official British ceremony on November 11, Armistice Day); in 1922 former U.S. representative, Food for Peace director, U.S. senator, Democratic presidential nominee, and U.S. ambassador George McGovern was born in Avon, South Dakota; in 1933 a shipment of Sierra Beer was received at Sewell's Market in Las Vegas, which the grocery store claimed was the first time Nevada-made beer was sold in the city (Tahoe Beer had not yet made an appearance); in 1953 the Oakland Tribune carried a full page report on Las Vegas subheaded "Lowdown on Vegas It's Fairly Pure"; in 1964 on National Shame Day (a holiday created by the Saigon regime to commemorate the July 21 1954 Geneva agreement that Saigon and the U.S. violated by refusing to hold free elections), Charles de Gaulle and Ho Chi Minh were burned in effigy and a French war memorial was vandalized while at a rally military chief of state Nguyen Khanh called for an invasion of the north, upsetting U.S. officials who thought they had an agreement that Saigon officials would not make such proposals without consulting them (and also it might blow the cover on U.S. provocations in the north); in 1980 Billy Joel's It's Still Rock and Roll To Me hit number one on the Billboard chart; in 1991 boxer Mike Tyson raped Miss Black America contestant Desiree Washington of Rhode Island in an Indianapolis hotel room (it became very chic for rich white men like Bob Guccione and Donald Trump to defend Tyson on the rape); in 1993 President Clinton announced regulations to implement his "Dont Ask, Don't Tell" policy regarding gays in the military and said the policy would end harassment and witch hunts (it actually led to a rise in the number of investigations and discharges every year for the rest of the Clinton administration, but such harassment then declined under Bush); in 2006 St. Leonards Primary School in Devon, Exeter in England censored John Lennon's Imagine from an end of term show after students had spent weeks rehearsing it.
Franklin Roosevelt / radio speech to the Democratic National Convention accepting the presidential nomination for a third term/July 19 1940: There have been occasions, as we remember, when reactions in the march of democracy have set in, and forward-looking progress has seemed to stop.
But such periods have been followed by liberal and progressive times which have enabled the nation to catch up with new developments in fulfilling new human needs. Such a time has been the past seven years. Because we had seemed to lag in previous years, we have had to develop, speedily and efficiently, the answers to aspirations which had come from every State and every family in the land.
We have sometimes called it social legislation; we have sometimes called it legislation to end the abuses of the past; we have sometimes called it legislation for human security; and we have sometimes called it legislation to better the condition of life of the many millions of our fellow citizens, who could not have the essentials of life or hope for an American standard of living.
Some of us have labeled it a wider and more equitable distribution of wealth in our land. It has included among its aims, to liberalize and broaden the control of vast industries˜lodged today in the hands of a relatively small group of individuals of very great financial power.
But all of these definitions and labels are essentially the expression of one consistent thought. They represent a constantly growing sense of human decency, human decency throughout our nation.
This sense of human decency is happily confined to no group or class. You find it in the humblest home. You find it among those who toil, and among the shopkeepers and the farmers of the nation. You find it, to a growing degree, even among those who are listed in that top group which has so much control over the industrial and financial structure of the nation. Therefore, this urge of humanity can by no means be labeled a war of class against class. It is rather a war against poverty and suffering and ill-health and insecurity, a war in which all classes are joining in the interest of a sound and enduring democracy.
I do not believe for a moment, and I know that you do not believe either, that we have fully answered all the needs of human security. But we have covered much of the road. I need not catalogue the milestones of seven years. For every individual and every family in the whole land know that the average of their personal lives has been made safer and sounder and happier than it has ever been before. I do not think they want the gains in these directions to be repealed or even to be placed in the charge of those who would give them mere lip-service with no heart service.
Yes, very much more remains to be done, and I think the voters want the task entrusted to those who believe that the words "human betterment" apply to poor and rich alike.
And I have a sneaking suspicion too, that voters will smile at charges of inefficiency against a Government which has boldly met the enormous problems of banking, and finance and industry which the great efficient bankers and industrialists of the Republican Party left in such hopeless chaos in the famous year 1933.
But we all know that our progress at home and in the other American nations toward this realization of a better human decency progress along free lines is gravely endangered by what is happening on other continents. In Europe, many nations, through dictatorships or invasions, have been compelled to abandon normal democratic processes. They have been compelled to adopt forms of government which some call "new and efficient."
They are not new, my friends, they are only a relapse a relapse into ancient history. The omnipotent rulers of the greater part of modern Europe have guaranteed efficiency, and work, and a type of security.
But the slaves who built the pyramids for the glory of the dictator Pharaohs of Egypt had that kind of security, that kind of efficiency, that kind of corporative state.
So did the inhabitants of that world which extended from Britain to Persia under the undisputed rule of the proconsuls sent out from Rome.
So did the henchmen, the tradesmen, the mercenaries and the slaves of the feudal system which dominated Europe a thousand years ago.
So did the people of those nations of Europe who received their kings and their government at the whim of the conquering Napoleon.
Whatever its new trappings and new slogans, tyranny is the oldest and most discredited rule known to history. And whenever tyranny has replaced a more human form of Government it has been due more to internal causes than external. Democracy can thrive only when it enlists the devotion of those whom Lincoln called the common people. Democracy can hold that devotion only when it adequately respects their dignity by so ordering society as to assure to the masses of men and women reasonable security and hope for themselves and for their children.
We in our democracy, and those who live in still unconquered democracies, will never willingly descend to any form of this so-called security of efficiency which calls for the abandonment of other securities more vital to the dignity of man. It is our credo-unshakable to the end that we must live under the liberties that were first heralded by Magna Carta and placed into glorious operation through the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights.
The Government of the United States for the past seven years has had the courage openly to oppose by every peaceful means the spread of the dictator form of Government. If our Government should pass to other hands next January-untried hands, inexperienced hands˜we can merely hope and pray that they will not substitute appeasement and compromise with those who seek to destroy all democracies everywhere, including here.
I would not undo, if I could, the efforts I made to prevent war from the moment it was threatened and to restrict the area of carnage, down to the last minute. I do not now soften the condemnation expressed by Secretary Hull and myself from time to time for the acts of aggression that have wiped out ancient liberty-loving, peace-pursuing countries which had scrupulously maintained neutrality. I do not recant the sentiments of sympathy with all free peoples resisting such aggression, or begrudge the material aid that we have given to them. I do not regret my consistent endeavor to awaken this country to the menace for us and for all we hold dear.
I have pursued these efforts in the face of appeaser fifth columnists who charged me with hysteria and war-mongering. But I felt it my duty, my simple, plain, inescapable duty, to arouse my countrymen to the danger of the new forces let loose in the world.
So long as I am President, I will do all I can to insure that that foreign policy remain our foreign policy.
All that I have done to maintain the peace of this country and to prepare it morally, as well as physically, for whatever contingencies may be in store, I submit to the judgment of my countrymen. We face one of the great choices of history. It is not alone a choice of Government by the people versus dictatorship. It is not alone a choice of freedom versus slavery. It is not alone a choice between moving forward or falling back. It is all of these rolled into one.
It is the continuance of civilization as we know it versus the ultimate destruction of all that we have held dear˜religion against godlessness; the ideal of justice against the practice of force; moral decency versus the firing squad; courage to speak out, and to act, versus the false lullaby of appeasement.
But it has been well said that a selfish and greedy people cannot be free.
The American people must decide whether these things are worth making sacrifices of money, of energy, and of self. They will not decide by listening to mere words or by reading mere pledges, interpretations and claims. They will decide on the record˜the record as it has been made˜the record of things as they are.
The American people will sustain the progress of a representative democracy, asking the Divine Blessing as they face the future with courage and with faith.
UPDATE FRIDAY 7-18-2008, 12:11 a.m. PDT, 07:11 GMT/CUT/SUT
George Bush on the probe into how CIA agent Valerie Plame's identity was outed / July 18, 2005: The best place for the facts to be done is by somebody who's spending time investigating it.
On this date in 64 the great fire of Rome began, blamed by Christians on emperor Nero who "fiddled while Rome burned" (his biographers report he was in Antium when the fire started and that he actually returned to organize fire fighting and arrange emergency housing and food for victims); in 1863 during an assault on Fort Wagner in Charleston, South Carolina, 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry Sergeant William Carney, a former slave, was wounded three times and during a retreat brought the flag back to Union lines (before radio communications, the pennant could help keep units together), actions for which he became the first African-American to receive the Medal of Honor; in 1877 directors of the Meat Shipping Company picked out twenty acres of land near the new Reno state prison site for the location of their new operation; in 1901 the Washoe County Commission, sitting as the Reno Town Board, voted to pave the town's streets; in 1925 volume one of Mein Kampf was published, and it spelled out Hitler's plans for dictatorship, war with France and Russia to create "living space", the elimination of racially "inferior" groups; in 1927 Ty Cobb achieved his 4,000th hit; in 1933 singer, comedian and Broadway actor Hannah Williams and boxer Jack Dempsey married in Elko, then departed for Dempsey's Reno home; in 1952 a sign was installed on the Nevada side of Boulder Dam (facing Arizona) reading "You are now entering the state of Nevada/Drive safely"; in 1960 Ronnie Self and Dub Albritton's I'm Sorry by Brenda Lee hit number one on the Billboard magazine chart; in 1960 production began on The Misfits, the Arthur Miller film set in Nevada; in 1965 Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara personally assisted in launching a bombing run on Vietnam aboard the U.S.S. Independence; in 1970 Willie Mays became the tenth player in baseball history to hit 3,000 hits when he singled in the second inning of a game against the Expos; in 2004 with the pungent scent of sagebrush (brought from Carson City) permeating the church during mass, Washington National Cathedral held a Nevada State Day.
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UPDATE THURSDAY 7-17-2008, 7:19 p.m. PDT, 02:10 7-18-2008 GMT/CUT/SUT On this date in 1863 at Honey Springs in the Indian Territory, the 1st Kansas Colored Volunteer Infantry Regiment was part of a force that encountered many Confederate troops, and the black soldiers fought fiercely for two hours, advancing to within fifty feet of the Confederates, who finally broke and ran; in 1914 the Irwin Brothers' wild west show began two days of performances in Reno; in 1927 with Nicaraguan patriot forces surrounding a U.S. Marine garrison in Ocatal, U.S. occupation forces used six or seven aircraft from Marine Observation Squadron 1 for an aerial dive-bombing attack, killing and injuring more than 300 Nicaraguans, the first known aerial bombing of a civilian population by the U.S.; in 1933 Elliott and Elizabeth Roosevelt, son and daughter in law of the president, were divorced in Minden, Nevada, and news reports said it was the first case of divorce in a U.S. "first family"; in 1935 the opening of a new Federal Emergency Relief Administration playground with supervised play for children at Robert Mitchell School in Sparks was announced (FERA was a New Deal agency); in 1935 Nevada Indian Affairs superintendent Alida Bowler presented to "sportsmen" fish hatchery plans for Pyramid Lake; in 1936 the Spanish civil war began with fascist uprisings against the Republic; in 1953 Stanley David Osborne of Reno died in Korea; in 1963 in a rare instance of legislators standing up to executive arrogance and an even rarer instance of public policy concern for the time for an issue of gender discrimination, a U.S. House subcommittee held hearings on why NASA recruited 13 women astronauts and then dumped them from the program; in 1966 Gomer and Sergeant Carter went to Las Vegas on the latest episode of Gomer Pyle U.S.M.C.; in 1968 The Beatles attended the premiere of their film Yellow Submarine at the London Palladium; in 1984, in a powerful speech to the Democratic National Convention that some party leaders called the greatest speech ever made at a party convention, presidential candidate Jesse Jackson apologized for his comments about Jews, said he was still learning and growing, and invoked the tragedies of the 1960s and African-American history to call for similar growth and learning by the Democratic Party (the television audience grew steadily as he spoke, rising to 33 million viewers by its conclusion; see below); in 1984 a study by the Center for the Study of Social Policy reported that while African-Americans had made political gains in the previous quarter century, they made no economic gains at all; in 2004 in Las Vegas, after she expressed support for Michael Moore and his film Fahrenheit 9/11 during her show at the Aladdin Casino, the management had Linda Ronstadt escorted off the property.
Jesse Jackson / July 17, 1984: This is not a perfect party. We are not a perfect people. Yet, we are called to a perfect mission: our mission to feed the hungry; to clothe the naked; to house the homeless; to teach the illiterate; to provide jobs for the jobless; and to choose the human race over the nuclear race. ... My constituency is the desperate, the damned, the disinherited, the disrespected, and the despised. They are restless and seek relief. They've voted in record numbers. They have invested faith, hope and trust that they have in us. The Democratic Party must send them a signal that we care. I pledge my best to not let them down. ...
Only leadership - that intangible combination of gifts, the discipline, information, circumstance, courage, timing, will and divine inspiration - can lead us out of the crisis in which we find ourselves. The leadership can mitigate the misery of our nation. Leadership can part the waters and lead our nation in the direction of the Promised Land. Leadership can lift the boats stuck at the bottom. I've had the rare opportunity to watch seven men, and then two, pour out their souls, offer their service and heal - and heed the call of duty to direct the course of our Nation. There is a proper season for everything. There is a time to sow, a time to reap. There is a time to compete, and a time to cooperate. ...
Throughout this campaign, I've tried to offer leadership to the Democratic Party and the Nation. If in my high moments, I have done some good, offered some service, shed some light, healed some wounds, rekindled some hope, or stirred someone from apathy and indifference, or in any way along the way helped somebody, then this campaign has not been in vain. For friends who loved and cared for me, and for a God who spared me, and for a family who understood, I am eternally grateful.
If, in my low moments, in word, deed or attitude, through some error of temper, taste or tone, I have caused anyone discomfort, created pain or revived someone's fears, that was not my truest self. If there were occasions when my grape turned into a raisin and my joy bell lost its resonance, please forgive me. Charge it to my head and not to my heart. My head - so limited in its finitude; my heart, which is boundless in its love for the human family. I am not a perfect servant. I am a public servant doing my best against the odds. As I develop and serve, be patient. God is not finished with me yet.
This campaign has taught me much; that leaders must be tough enough to fight, tender enough to cry, human enough to make mistakes, humble enough to admit them, strong enough to absorb the pain and resilient enough to bounce back and keep on moving. ... Our flag is red, white and blue, but our nation is a rainbow - red, yellow, brown, black and white - and we're all precious in God's sight. America is not like a blanket - one piece of unbroken cloth, the same color, the same texture, the same size. America is more like a quilt - many patches, many pieces, many colors, many sizes, all woven and held together by a common thread. The white, the Hispanic, the black, the Arab, the Jew, the woman, the native American, the small farmer, the businessperson, the environmentalist, the peace activist, the young, the old, the lesbian, the gay and the disabled make up the American quilt. Even in our fractured state, all of us count and all of us fit somewhere.
We have proven that we can survive without each other. But we have not proven that we can win and progress without each other. We must come together. From Fannie Lou Hamer in Atlantic City in 1964 to the Rainbow Coalition in San Francisco today; from the Atlantic to the Pacific, we have experienced pain but progress as we ended American apartheid laws, we got public accommodation, we secured voting rights, we obtained open housing, as young people got the right to vote. We lost Malcolm, Martin, Medgar, Bobby, John and Viola. The team that got us here must be expanded, not abandoned.
Twenty years ago, tears welled up in our eyes as the bodies of Schwerner, Goodman and Chaney were dredged from the depths of a river in Mississippi. Twenty years later, our communities, black and Jewish, are in anguish, anger and pain. Feelings have been hurt on both sides. There is a crisis in communications. Confusion is in the air. But we cannot afford to lose our way. We may agree to agree; or agree to disagree on issues; we must bring back civility to these tensions. We are co-partners in a long and rich religious history - the Judeo-Christian traditions. Many blacks and Jews have a shared passion for social justice at home and peace abroad. We must seek a revival of the spirit, inspired by a new vision and new possibilities. We must return to higher ground. We are bound by Moses and Jesus, but also connected with Islam and Mohammed. These three great religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam, were all born in the revered and holy city of Jerusalem.
We are bound by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Rabbi Abraham Heschel, crying out from their graves for us to reach common ground. We are bound by shared blood and shared sacrifices. We are much too intelligent; much too bound by our Judeo-Christian heritage; much too victimized by racism, sexism, militarism and anti-Semitism; much too threatened as historical scapegoats to go on divided one from another. We must turn from finger pointing to clasped hands. We must share our burdens and our joys with each other once again. We must turn to each other and not on each other and choose higher ground. Twenty years later, we cannot be satisfied by just restoring the old coalition. Old wine skins must make room for new wine. We must heal and expand.
The Rainbow Coalition is making room for Arab Americans. They, too, know the pain and hurt of racial and religious rejection. They must not continue to be made pariahs.
The Rainbow Coalition is making room for Hispanic Americans who this very night are living under the threat of the Simpson-Mazzoli bill and farm workers from Ohio who are fighting the Campbell Soup Company with a boycott to achieve legitimate workers' rights.
The Rainbow is making room for the Native American, the most exploited people of all, a people with the greatest moral claim amongst us. We support them as they seek the restoration of their ancient land and claim amongst us. We support them as they seek the restoration of land and water rights, as they seek to preserve their ancestral homelands and the beauty of a land that was once all theirs. They can never receive a fair share for all they have given us. They must finally have a fair chance to develop their great resources and to preserve their people and their culture.
The Rainbow Coalition includes Asian Americans, now being killed in our streets, scapegoats for the failures of corporate, industrial and economic policies.
The Rainbow is making room for the young Americans. Twenty years ago, our young people were dying in a war for which they could not even vote. Twenty years later, young America has the power to stop a war in Central America and the responsibility to vote in great numbers. Young America must be politically active in 1984. The choice is war or peace. We must make room for young America.
The Rainbow includes disabled veterans. The color scheme fits in the Rainbow. The disabled have their handicap revealed and their genius concealed; while the able-bodied have their genius revealed and their disability concealed. But ultimately, we must judge people by their values and their contribution. Don't leave anybody out. I would rather have Roosevelt in a wheelchair than Reagan on a horse.
The Rainbow includes small farmers. They have suffered tremendously under the Reagan regime. They will either receive 90 percent parity or 100 percent charity. We must address their concerns and make room for them.
The Rainbow includes lesbians and gays. No American citizen ought to be denied equal protection from the law. ...
To be strong leaders, we must be long-suffering as we seek to right the wrongs of our Party and our Nation. We must expand our Party, heal our Party and unify our Party. That is our mission in 1984. ... Jesus said that we should not be judged by the bark we wear but by the fruit that we bear. Jesus said that we must measure greatness by how we treat the least of these. ...
The big corporations and rich individuals who received the bulk of a three-year, multibillion tax cut from Mr. Reagan are recovering. But no such recovery is under way for the least of these. Rising tides don't lift all boats, particularly those stuck at the bottom. For the boats stuck at the bottom there's a misery index. This Administration has made life more miserable for the poor. Its attitude has been contemptuous. Its policies and programs have been cruel and unfair to working people. They must be held accountable in November for increasing infant mortality among the poor. In Detroit- in Detroit, one of the great cities in the western world, babies are dying at the same rate as Honduras, the most underdeveloped Nation in out hemisphere.
This Administration must be held accountable for policies that have contributed to the growing poverty in America. There are now 34 million people in poverty, 15 percent of our Nation. Twenty-three million are White, 11 million Black, Hispanic, Asian and others. By the end of this year, there will be 41 million people in poverty. We cannot stand idly by. We must fight for change now. ...
When I was a child growing up in Greenville, South Carolina, the Reverend Sample used to preach ever so often a sermon relating to Jesus and he said, "If I be lifted up, I will draw all men unto me." I didn't quite understand what he meant as a child growing up, but I understand a little better now. If you raise up truth, it is magnetic. It has a way of drawing people. With all this confusion in this Convention, the bright lights and parties and big fun, we must raise up the single proposition: If we lift up a program to feed the hungry, they will come running; if we lift up a program to start a war no more, our youth will come running; if we lift up a program to put America back to work, and an alternative to welfare and despair, they will come running. ...
No lie can live forever. Our time has come. We must leave the racial battle ground and come to the economic common ground and moral higher ground. America, our time has come. We come from disgrace to amazing grace.
UPDATE WEDNESDAY 7-16-2008, 7:31 a.m. PDT, 14:31 GMT/CUT/SUT
George W. Bush / July 16, 2003: Our country puts $1 billion a year up to help feed the hungry. And we're by far the most generous nation in the world when it comes to that, and I'm proud to report that. This isn't a contest of who's the most generous. I'm just telling you as an aside. We're generous. We shouldn't be bragging about it. But we are. We're very generous. [Sweden, Luxembourg, Norway, Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, UK, Belgium, Austria, France, Finland, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Portugal, and Italy all provide higher portions of their GDP for foreign assistance, and about 20 percent of what funding the U.S. does provide goes to two affluent nations, Egypt and Israel.]
On this date in 1769, Junipero Serra started the first Catholic mission in Alta California, and called it San Diego de Alcala; in 1863 nothing ever changes: At a time when U.S. forces were needed in the civil war between north and south, the frigate USS Wyoming was in Shimonoseki Strait in Japan attacking vessels in a Japanese civil war; in 1863 in the Battle of Sol Legare Island, the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry participated in repelling an attack on James Island, South Carolina, winning praise on both sides of the national borders but also taking terrible casualties (the African-American unit's story was told in the movie Glory); in 1936 U.S. Farm Security Administration photographer Walker Evans took a leave of absence to accept an assignment from Fortune magazine to chronicle, with writer James Agee, life among Alabama sharecroppers, though Fortune later turned down their work (it was published as Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, which was named in 1999 as number 14 on a list of the hundred greatest works of journalism of the 1900s); in 1945, the first atomic explosion was detonated near Alamogordo at 5:30 in the morning (atomic scientist Robert Oppenheimer, witnessing the blast, thought of two verses from the Bhagvad Gita: "Of a thousand suns in the sky if suddenly should burst forth the light, it would be like unto the light of that Exalted One." XI/12, "Death am I, cause of destruction of the worlds, matured and set out to gather in the worlds there" XI/32; in 1945, New York Times reporter William L. Laurence was the only reporter permitted to be present at the explosion of the first atomic device in Alamogordo (on September 12 1945 Laurence wrote a story misrepresenting the event in order to help the government combat reports of radiation sickness at Hiroshima: "This historic ground in New Mexico, scene of the first atomic explosion on earth and cradle of a new era in civilization, gave the most effective answer today to Japanese propaganda that radiations were responsible for deaths even after the day of the explosion, Aug. 6, and that persons entering Hiroshima had contracted mysterious maladies due to persistent radioactivity."); in 1952 Nevada delegates departing for the Democratic National Convention in Chicago were split among Richard Russell, Averill Harriman, Adlai Stevenson, Estes Kefauver and Robert Kerr for the presidential nomination; in 1952 The Captive City starring John Forsythe, filmed in Carson City and Reno and endorsed by U.S. Senator Estes Kefauver, opened at the Fremont Theatre in Las Vegas; in 1962 Assemblymember Maude Frazier of Clark County resigned from the Nevada Legislature to become lieutenant governor of Nevada, appointed by Governor Grant Sawyer after the death of Lieutenant Governor Rex Bell; in 1966 Summer In The City by The Lovin' Spoonful was released and Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich's Hanky Panky by Tommy James and the Shondells hit number one on the Billboard chart (Tommy James: "I don't think anybody can record a song that bad and make it sound good."); in 1970, Governor Paul Laxalt, invited by a labor leader on July 13 to intervene in a strike at the atomic test site, announced that members of Operating Engineers Local 12 would return to work; in 1979 Saddam Hussein became president of Iraq; in 1979 at 6 a.m., 93 million gallons of radioactive water breached the south side of United Nuclear Corp.'s earthen tailings dam near Church Rock, New Mexico, and entered the Puerco River, carrying with it 1,100 tons of uranium tailings and other heavy metals across the Navajo nation, through downtown Gallup, N.M., across the whole width of Arizona and into Lake Mead, the largest discharge of liquid radioactive material in U.S. history (Native American groups are now battling efforts to reopen uranium mining in the same region); in 1992 after an acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention whose principal device the "New Covenant" fell flat and was quickly forgotten, Bill Clinton's presidential nomination was celebrated in the convention hall (Madison Square Garden) not to the traditional Happy Days Are Here Again but to Fleetwood Mac's Don't Stop; in 1999 the Sparks Nugget agreed to pay a $250,000 fine and pay the costs of state gambling regulators for years of acceptance of messenger bets (it was one of the largest ever imposed against a Nevada casino to that time); in 2006 during a break at a summit meeting in St. Petersburg, George Bush came up behind German Chancellor Angela Merkel and started massaging her shoulders, causing her to hunch over, grimace, and flail her arms in surprise (the sequence was one of those incidents largely ignored by the mainstream media that set the internet afire, with the four second tape clip posted on hundreds of sites, forcing the story into the mainstream).
U.S. Senator Barry Goldwater / acceptance speech / Republican National Convention / San Francisco / July 16, 1964: During four futile years, the administration which we shall replace has distorted and lost that faith. It has talked and talked and talked and talked the words of freedom. Now, failures cement the wall of shame in Berlin. Failures blot the sands of shame at the Bay of Pigs. Failures mark the slow death of freedom in Laos. Failures infest the jungles of Vietnam. And failures haunt the houses of our once great alliances and undermine the greatest bulwark ever erected by free nations - the NATO community. Failures proclaim lost leadership, obscure purpose, weakening wills, and the risk of inciting our sworn enemies to new aggressions and to new excesses. Because of this administration we are tonight a world divided - we are a nation becalmed. We have lost the brisk pace of diversity and the genius of individual creativity. We are plodding at a pace set by centralized planning, red tape, rules without responsibility, and regimentation without recourse.
Rather than useful jobs in our country, people have been offered bureaucratic "make work," rather than moral leadership, they have been given bread and circuses, spectacles, and, yes, they have even been given scandals. Tonight there is violence in our streets, corruption in our highest offices, aimlessness among our youth, anxiety among our elders and there is a virtual despair among the many who look beyond material success for the inner meaning of their lives. Where examples of morality should be set, the opposite is seen. Small men, seeking great wealth or power, have too often and too long turned even the highest levels of public service into mere personal opportunity.
Now, certainly, simple honesty is not too much to demand of men in government. We find it in most. Republicans demand it from everyone. They demand it from everyone no matter how exalted or protected his position might be. The growing menace in our country tonight, to personal safety, to life, to limb and property, in homes, in churches, on the playgrounds, and places of business, particularly in our great cities, is the mounting concern, or should be, of every thoughtful citizen in the United States.
Security from domestic violence, no less than from foreign aggression, is the most elementary and fundamental purpose of any government, and a government that cannot fulfill that purpose is one that cannot long command the loyalty of its citizens. History shows us demonstrates that nothing nothing prepares the way for tyranny more than the failure of public officials to keep the streets from bullies and marauders.
Now, we Republicans see all this as more, much more, than the rest: of mere political differences or mere political mistakes. We see this as the result of a fundamentally and absolutely wrong view of man, his nature and his destiny. Those who seek to live your lives for you, to take your liberties in return for relieving you of yours, those who elevate the state and downgrade the citizen must see ultimately a world in which earthly power can be substituted for divine will, and this Nation was founded upon the rejection of that notion and upon the acceptance of God as the author of freedom.
Those who seek absolute power, even though they seek it to do what they regard as good, are simply demanding the right to enforce their own version of heaven on earth. And let me remind you, they are the very ones who always create the most hellish tyrannies. Absolute power does corrupt, and those who seek it must be suspect and must be opposed. Their mistaken course stems from false notions of equality, ladies and gentlemen. Equality, rightly understood, as our founding fathers understood it, leads to liberty and to the emancipation of creative differences. Wrongly understood, as it has been so tragically in our time, it leads first to conformity and then to despotism.
Fellow Republicans, it is the cause of Republicanism to resist concentrations of power, private or public, which enforce such conformity and inflict such despotism. It is the cause of Republicanism to ensure that power remains in the hands of the people. And, so help us God, that is exactly what a Republican president will do with the help of a Republican Congress.
Yesterday it was Korea. Tonight it is Vietnam. Make no bones of this. Don't try to sweep this under the rug. We are at war in Vietnam. And yet the President, who is Commander-in-Chief of our forces, refuses to say - refuses to say, mind you, whether or not the objective over there is victory. And his secretary of defense continues to mislead and misinform the American people, and enough of it has gone by.
And I needn't remind you, but I will; it has been during Democratic years that a billion persons were cast into Communist captivity and their fate cynically sealed.
Today in our beloved country we have an administration which seems eager to deal with communism in every coin known - from gold to wheat, from consulates to confidence, and even human freedom itself.
I believe that we must look beyond the defense of freedom today to its extension tomorrow. I believe that the communism which boasts it will bury us will, instead, give way to the forces of freedom. And I can see in the distant and yet recognizable future the outlines of a world worthy our dedication, our every risk, our every effort, our every sacrifice along the way. Yes, a world that will redeem the suffering of those who will be liberated from tyranny. I can see and I suggest that all thoughtful men must contemplate the flowering of an Atlantic civilization, the whole world of Europe unified and free, trading openly across its borders, communicating openly across the world. This is a goal far, far more meaningful than a moon shot.
I can see this Atlantic civilization galvanizing and guiding emergent nations everywhere. I know this freedom is not the fruit of every soil. I know that our own freedom was achieved through centuries, by unremitting efforts by brave and wise men. I know that the road to freedom is a long and a challenging road. I know also that some men may walk away from it, that some men resist challenge, accepting the false security of governmental paternalism.
And I pledge that the America I envision in the years ahead will extend its hand in health, in teaching and in cultivation, so that all new nations will be at least encouraged to go our way, so that they will not wander down the dark alleys of tyranny or to the dead-end streets of collectivism. My fellow Republicans, we do no man a service by hiding freedom's light under a bushel of mistaken humility.
I seek an American proud of its past, proud of its ways, proud of its dreams, and determined actively to proclaim them. But our example to the world must, like charity, begin at home.
I seek an American proud of its past, proud of its ways, proud of its dreams, and determined actively to proclaim them. But our example to the world must, like charity, begin at home.
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UPDATE TUESDAY 7-15-2008, 7:31 a.m. PDT, 14:31 GMT/CUT/SUT On this date in 1864 for one dollar, J.D. Pollard leased D.W. Strong's ranch on the west side of Donner Lake with "full interest in property as buildings as originally planned are completed or $2500 expended"; in 1919 the Provost Marshal General in D.C., who administered the draft, was relieved of duty and his office shut down, ending draft activities, and it was announced that 337,000 U.S. men had resisted the draft during the world war; in 1933 in Clark County, the U.S. Forest Service gave its approval for a highway into Charleston Park; in 1947 after six small children in three years drowned, the Reno city council voted for a $100,000 bond to fence ditches that crossed the city, one of them forming the southern border of popular Whitaker Park; in 1948 Harry Truman won the Democratic presidential nomination; in 1948 in a reversal of an earlier decision, the Arizona Supreme Court upheld the right to vote of Native Americans; in 1952 in Reno Nackey Gallowher, grandaughter of Scripps Howard Newspapers founder E.W. Scripps, married New Hampshire newspaper publisher William Loeb, after which the couple announced they would establish a tax residence in Nevada (it was located on Franktown Road in Washoe Valley); in 1964 Barry Goldwater of Arizona won the Republican presidential nomination; in 1966 When A Man Loves A Woman by Percy Sledge went gold; in 1970 news reports said U.S. Senator Alan Bible of Nevada urged the senate Indian affairs subcommittee chaired by Senator George McGovern to support legislation giving tribes more legal control over the federal land on which Native American colonies are built; in 1970 a bill returning land to the Washoe Tribe in Woodfords received final congressional approval; in 1986, César Chávez spoke to Nevada workers at the Musicians Union hall in Reno; in 1999, after half a century of evasions and denials by the federal government, U.S. Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson acknowledged for the first time that thousands of nuclear weapons contract workers were made sick by exposure to toxic substances and promised to compensate many of them for medical care and lost wages.
Harry Truman / acceptance speech / Democratic National Convention / Philadelphia / July 15, 1948: I am sorry that the microphones are in the way, but I must leave them the way they are because I have got to be able to see what I am doing--as I am always able to see what I am doing...Senator Barkley and I will win this election and make these Republicans like it--don't you forget that! We will do that because they are wrong and we are right.
Wages and salaries in this country have increased from 29 billion in 1933 to more than $128 billion in 1947. That's labor, and labor never had but one friend in politics, and that is the Democratic Party and Franklin D. Roosevelt. And I say to labor what I have said to the farmers: they are the most ungrateful people in the world if they pass the Democratic Party by this year.
The total national income has increased from less than $40 billion in 1933 to $203 billion in 1947, the greatest in all the history of the world. These benefits have been spread to all the people, because it is the business of the Democratic Party to see that the people get a fair share of these things.
This last, worst 80th Congress proved just the opposite for the Republicans.
In the field of labor we needed moderate legislation to promote labor-management harmony, but Congress passed instead that so-called Taft-Hartley Act, which has disrupted labor-management relations and will cause strife and bitterness for years to come if it is not repealed, as the Democratic platform says it ought to be repealed. On the Labor Department, the Republican platform of 1944 said, if they were in power, that they would build up a strong Labor Department. They have simply torn it up. Only one bureau is left that is functioning, and they cut the appropriation of that so it can hardly function.
I recommended an increase in the minimum wage. What did I get? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.
I suggested that the schools in this country are crowded, teachers underpaid, and that there is a shortage of teachers. One of our greatest national needs is more and better schools. I urged the Congress to provide $300 million to aid the States in the present educational crisis. Congress did nothing about it. Time and again I have recommended improvements in the social security law, including extending protection to those not now covered, and increasing the amount of benefits, to reduce the eligibility age of women from 65 to 60 years. Congress studied the matter for 2 years, but couldn't find the time to extend or increase the benefits. But they did find time to take social security benefits away from 750,000 people, and they passed that over my veto.
I have repeatedly asked the Congress to pass a health program. The Nation suffers from lack of medical care. That situation can be remedied any time the Congress wants to act upon it.
Everybody knows that I recommended to the Congress the civil rights program. I did that because I believed it to be my duty under the Constitution. Some of the members of my own party disagree with me violently on this matter. But they stand up and do it openly! People can tell where they stand. But the Republicans all professed to be for these measures. But Congress failed to act. They had enough men to do it, they could have had cloture, they didn't have to have a filibuster. They had enough people in that Congress that would vote for cloture.
Now everybody likes to have low taxes, but we must reduce the national debt in times of prosperity. And when tax relief can be given, it ought to go to those who need it most, and not those who need it least, as this Republican rich man's tax bill did when they passed it over my veto on the third try. The first one of these was so rotten that they couldn't even stomach it themselves. They finally did send one that was somewhat improved, but it still helps the rich and sticks a knife into the back of the poorÝ
The Republican platform cries about cruelly high prices. I have been trying to get them to do something about high prices ever since they met the first time.
Now listen! This is equally as bad, and as cynical. The Republican platform comes out for slum clearance and low-rental housing. I have been trying to get them to pass that housing bill ever since they met the first time, and it is still resting in the Rules Committee, that bill.
The Republican platform favors educational opportunity and promotion of education. I have been trying to get Congress to do something about that ever since they came there, and that bill is at rest in the House of Representatives.
The Republican platform is for extending and increasing social security benefits. Think of that! Increasing social security benefits! Yet when they had the opportunity, they took 750,000 off the social security rolls!
I wonder if they think they can fool the people of the United States with such poppycock as that!
My duty as President requires that I use every means within my power to get the laws the people need on matters of such importance and urgency. I am therefore calling this Congress back into session July 26th. On the 26th day of July, which out in Missouri we call "Turnip Day,"I am going to call Congress back and ask them to pass laws to halt rising prices, to meet the housing crisis which they are saying they are for in their platform. At the same time I shall ask them to act upon other vitally needed measures such as aid to education, which they say they are for; a national health program; civil rights legislation, which they say they are for; an increase in the minimum wage, which I doubt very much they are for; extension of the social security coverage and increased benefits, which they say they are for; funds for projects needed in our program to provide public power and cheap electricity. By indirection, this 80th Congress has tried to sabotage the power policies the United States has pursued for 14 years. That power lobby is as bad as the real estate lobby, which is sitting on the housing bill. I shall ask for adequate and decent laws for displaced persons in place of this anti-Semitic, anti-Catholic law which this 80th Congress passed.
Now, my friends, if there is any reality behind that Republican platform, we ought to get some action from a short session of the 80th Congress. They can do this job in 15 days, if they want to do it. They will still have time to go out and run for office.
John Kennedy / acceptance speech / Democratic National Convention / July 15, 1960: I hope that no American, considering the really critical issues facing this country, will waste his franchise and throw away his vote by voting either for me or against me solely on account of my religious affiliation. It is not relevant. I want to stress, what some other political or religious leader may have said on this subject. It is not relevant what abuses may have existed in other countries or in other times. It is not relevant what pressures, if any, might conceivably be brought to bear on me. I am telling you now what you are entitled to know: that my decisions on any public policy will be my own as an American, a Democrat and a free man. ...
All over the world, particularly in the newer nations, young men are coming to power men who are not bound by the traditions of the past, men who are not blinded by the old fears and hates and rivalries, young men who can cast off the old slogans and delusions and suspicions. ... For I stand tonight facing west on what was once the last frontier. From the lands that stretch three thousand miles behind me, the pioneers of old gave up their safety, their comfort and sometimes their lives to build a new world here in the West. They were not the captives of their own doubts, the prisoners of their own price tags.
Their motto was not "every man for himself" but "all for the common cause." They were determined to make that new world strong and free, to overcome its hazards and its hardships, to conquer the enemies that threatened from without and within. Today some would say that those struggles are all over, that all the horizons have been explored, that all the battles have been won, that there is no longer an American frontier. But I trust that no one in this vast assemblage will agree with those sentiments. For the problems are not all solved and the battles are not all won˜and we stand today on the edge of a New Frontier, the frontier of the 1960s, a frontier of unknown opportunities and peril, a frontier of unfulfilled hopes and threats.
Woodrow Wilson's New Freedom promised our nation a new political and economic framework. Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal promised security and succor to those in need. But the New Frontier of which I speak is not a set of promises it is a set of challenges. It sums up not what I intend to offer the American people, but what I intend to ask of them. It appeals to their pride, not to their pocketbook it holds out the promise of more sacrifice instead of more security. But I tell you the New Frontier is here, whether we seek it or not.
Beyond that frontier are the uncharted areas of science and space, unsolved problems of peace and war, unconquered pockets of ignorance and prejudice, unanswered questions of poverty and surplus. It would be easier to shrink back from that frontier, to look to the safe mediocrity of the past, to be lulled by good intentions and high rhetoric and those who prefer that course should not cast their votes for me, regardless of party. But I believe the times demand new invention, innovation, imagination, decision. I am asking each of you to be pioneers on that New Frontier. My call is to the young in heart, regardless of age to all who respond to the scriptural call: "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed." For courage, not complacency, is our need today leadership, not salesmanship. And the only valid test of leadership is the ability to lead, and lead vigorously. ...
For the harsh facts of the matter are that we stand on this frontier at a turning-point in history. We must prove all over again whether this nation or any nation so conceived can long endure, whether our society, with its freedom of choice, its breadth of opportunity, its range of alternatives, can compete with the single-minded advance of the Communist system. Can a nation organized and governed such as ours endure? That is the real question. Have we the nerve and the will? Can we carry through in an age where we will witness not only new breakthroughs in weapons of destruction˜but also a race for mastery of the sky and the rain, the ocean and the tides, the far side of space and the inside of men's minds? ...
That is the question of the New Frontier. That is the choice our nation must make a choice that lies not merely between two men or two parties, but between the public interest and private comfort, between national greatness and national decline, between the fresh air of progress and the stale, dank atmosphere of "normalcy" between determined dedication and creeping mediocrity. All mankind waits upon our decision. A whole world looks to see what we will do. We cannot fail their trust, we cannot fail to try. It has been a long road from that first snowy day in New Hampshire to this crowded convention city. Now begins another long journey, taking me into your cities and homes all over America. Give me your help, your hand, your voice, your vote. Recall with me the words of Isaiah: "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary."
UPDATE MONDAY 7-14-2008, 3:56 a.m. PDT, 10:56 GMT/SUT/CUT Happy Bastille Day!
The revolution will be televised:
Tad Dunbar live on the Barbwire tomorrow
Phone calls and chat crawls Tune in, turn on and tell a friend.
July 14 / Bastille Day
Robert M. La Follette/July 14, 1917: Today secret service men, United States district attorneys, United States marshals...and other federal officials are rankly abusing their authority on every hand.
On this date in 1789 the Bastille, a state prison that symbolized the tyranny and secrecy of the royal regime, was stormed by the people of Paris and its prisoners released, an action signifying that power no longer resided in king or God but in the people, the beginning of the First Republic, and the irreversibility of the revolution (in 1880 this date was declared the French national holiday); in 1890 at a meeting held at the Reno Methodist Church, a Law and Order League was organized to "aid the local officers" in enforcing the laws against lotteries, the midnight closing time for saloons and casinos, and laws against sale of liquor and tobacco to minors; in 1918, the town of Fallon, Nevada celebrated Bastille Day in honor of wartime ally France, "the best friend this country ever had among the nations of the earth"; in 1933 in Minden, Nevada, First Son Elliott Roosevelt filed for a divorce from his wife Elizabeth, in papers drawn up by attorney Sam Platt; in 1965 police said they had run out of clues on the fate of vanished Winnemucca Indian Colony leader Delbert Howard since someone tried to use his identification at a Las Vegas bank; in 1966 Paperback Writer by the Beatles went gold; in 1970 Reno attorney Robert Rose filed his candidacy for Washoe County district attorney, his first run for public office in a career that took him to lieutenant governor, Democratic nominee for governor, and Nevada supreme court justice; in 1989 in South Carolina, 432 guitarists played Louie Louie iin unison for thirty minutes; in 2003, columnist Robert Novak outed CIA officer Valerie Plame.
Robert La Follette/July 14, 1917: In these days whenever an American citizen presumes to question the justification, either in law or morals, of our participation in the European war, he is at once denounced by the war party and the war press as disloyal to the country.
The war party in the United States seeks to justify our entrance into the bloody conflict on the ground that it is in the interest of democracy. But every man and every woman knows that there is a struggle going on today in every civilized nation between democracy and autocracy.
Every nation has its war party. It is not the party of democracy. It is the party of autocracy. It seeks to dominate absolutely. It is commercial, imperialistic, ruthless. It tolerates no opposition. It is just as arrogant, just as despotic, in London, or in Washington, as in Berlin. The American Jingo is twin to the German Junker.
In times of peace, the war party insists on making preparation for war. As soon as prepared for war, it insists on making war. If there is no sufficient reason for war, the war party will make war on one pretext, then invent another, possibly more effective, pretext after war is on.
Before war is declared, the war party assumes the divine right to denounce and silence all opposition to war as unpatriotic and cowardly.
After Congress has been bullied into a declaration of war, the politicians, the press, and the mercenaries of the war party assume authority to deny the right of American citizens to discuss the necessity for the war, or the ultimate object and purpose of the declaration of war.
Today Secret Service men, United States District Attorneys, United States Marshals, United States Court Commissioners, and other federal officials are rankly abusing their authority on every hand. People are being unlawfully arrested, thrown into jail, denied the right to employ counsel, or to communicate with their friends, or even to inform their families of their whereabouts, subjected to unlawful search, threatened, intimidated, examined, and cross-examined. The most sacred constitutional rights guaranteed to every American citizen are violated in the name of democracy.
It appears to be the purpose of those conducting this procedure to throw the country into a state of terror, to coerce public opinion, stifle criticism, suppress discussion of the issues of the war, and put a quietus on all opposition . . .
It is time for the American people to assert and maintain their rights.
George Bush, who claimed to already be president in 2004/July 13, 2004: Give me a chance to be your president and America will be safer and stronger and better.
On this date in 1763 in what was apparently a follow-up to a previous letter, Colonel Henry Bouquet wrote to Lord Jeffrey Amherst, commander of British forces in North America during the Seven Years War, about their plans to use contaminated blankets (presumably with smallpox) against tribes around Fort Pitt: "I will try to inocculate the Indians by means of Blankets that may fall in their hands, taking care however not to get the disease myself. As it is pity to oppose good men against them, I wish we could make use of the Spaniard's Method, and hunt them with English Dogs. Supported by Rangers, and some Light Horse, who would I think effectively extirpate or remove that Vermine."; in 1793 French revolutionary leader Jean Paul Marat was assassinated by royalist sympathizer Charlotte Corday; in 1917 three children in Fatima, Portugal, reported having visions of a woman; in 1918 twenty weeks after independence, in an effort to stave off annexation to Prussia or Saxony, the Lithuanian State Council declared a constitutional monarchy with Duke William von Urach of Wittenberg declared King Mindaugas II (the declaration was later revoked in favor of a proclamation of constitutional government); in 1928 Robert Nix, Jr., first African-American chief justice of a state supreme court (Pennsylvania), was born in Philadelphia; in 1933, Nevada labor leader and Democratic Party figure A.V. Dalrymple was appointed deputy prohibition administrator for the Nevada district five months before prohibition was repealed; in 1939 Frank Sinatra made his first recording with the Harry James band on Melancholy Mood and From the Bottom Of My Heart; in 1952, before the Las Vegas Westside Elks Club, Los Angeles attorney Hugh MacBeth (who was about to serve as a California delegate to the Democratic National Convention in Chicago), "instigator" as the Las Vegas Review Journal described him of the planned Inter-racial Village in Clark County, gave the first of three speeches during the week before service groups in Las Vegas; in 1955 In Camden, New Jersey, RCA announced that in an AM radio station it installed near ground zero of an atomic test in Nevada, "not a single tube or component was damaged" and the station could have gone on the air right after the test; in 1960 U.S. Senator John Kennedy of Massachusetts was nominated for president by the Democratic National Convention meeting in Los Angeles; in 1968 Born To Be Wild by Steppenwolf was released; in 1970, Miners Local 872 business manager James Ryan asked Governor Paul Laxalt to step into a strike of Nevada atomic testing workers and mediate an agreement; in 1970 former KCRL (now KRNV) television news director and anchorman Nick Lauri of Reno filed his candidacy for the Nevada Assembly; in 1970 Nevada Assembly speaker Howard McKissick, a Washoe County Republican, called Nevada's $24 million surplus too high and proposed that the state "either knock off the sales tax or start paying state employees and state teachers living wages"; in 1972, U.S. Senator George McGovern accepted the Democratic presidential nomination; in 2000, a group of renowned songwriters (including Hal David, Jerry Leiber, Paul McCartney, Carole King and Brian Wilson) selected In My Life, written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney and made a hit by The Beatles, as the greatest song ever written; in 2005 at a news conference, George Bush promised to discuss the CIA leak case involving Scooter Libby after the investigation was complete (he later refused to comment on it after the investigation was complete, after the conviction was complete, after the sentencing was complete, and after the commutation was complete).
George McGovern/July 13 1972: If we some day choke on the polluted air of our cities, there will be little consolation in leaving behind a dying continent ringed with steel.
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On this date in 1861 two days after the Creek tribe signed a treaty with the Confederate States, the Choctaw and Chickasaw also did so; in 1917, Arizona vigilantes hauled more than a thousand striking copper miners from their beds, loaded them into a railroad car, shipped them across the border to New Mexico, and abandoned them in the desert; in 1934 after Eleanor Roosevelt departed Chicago on a westbound flight but with no destination announced, the Nevada State Journal carried a front page story speculating that she might be on her way to Reno to visit her daughter Anna at the Pyramid Lake ranch where she was establishing a divorce residency; in 1947 the baby boom started kicking in: The Nevada birthrate jumped 57 percent in the first five months of 1947 over the same period of 1946; in 1951 a mob tried to keep an African-American family from moving into their home in Cicero, Illinois, sparking rioting, the Cicero police did nothing, and Governor Adlai Stevenson called in the national guard; in 1962 the first Rolling Stones concert was held at the Marquee Club in London; in 1966 the Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy (now a general peace group known solely as SANE) and U.S. socialist leader Norman Thomas asked Vietnamese President Ho Chi Minh to provide humane treatment for captured U.S. pilots, whose ranks were growing rapidly with the intensified bombing campaign; in 1966 the Nevada State Journal began publication of a six part series on the Reno Sparks Indian Colony; in 1969, Rick Evans' In the Year 2525 by Zager and Evans hit number one on the Billboard chart (Evans responded to the success by breaking up the duo and eventually moving to Lake Tahoe where he performs locally); in 1972 U.S. Senator George McGovern was nominated for president by the Democratic National Convention; in 1976 U.S. Representative Barbara Jordan gave the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention, a first for an African-American woman; in 2006 at the funeral of Enron securities fraud conspirator Ken Lay, Reverend William Lawson compared Lay to lynching victim James Byrd, who was dragged to his death behind a truck in Jasper, Texas: "Ken Lay was neither black nor poor, as James Byrd was, but I'm angry because Ken was the victim of a lynching."
UPDATE FRIDAY 7-11-2008, 9:25 a.m. PDT, 16:25 GMT/SUT/CUT On this date in 1274, Robert I, the Bruce, king of Scotland who was misrepresented in the film Braveheart as an opportunist, was born in Turnberry Castle, Ayrshire of both Norman and Celtic ancestry; in 1656, under the illusion that the new world offered a refuge from religious persecution, former servant Mary Fisher (who had been imprisoned and brutalized in England for her Quaker beliefs) and mother of five Ann Austin traveled to Boston where they were arrested as Quakers and sent back to England; in 1860, after the imposition of the first military draft in U.S. history, draft riots began in New York City when poor whites learned that the wealthy were permitted to buy their way out of service; in 1908, the Nevada State Journal reported that Sparks school trustees were requiring that teachers in that community must live in Sparks; in 1947, Nevada Governor Edward Carville resigned and was appointed to the U.S. Senate by Lieutenant Governor Vail Pittman (he is one of three U.S. governors who appointed themselves to the senate, and all three were defeated in the next election); in 1949, after the first trial of Alger Hiss, which ended in a hung jury, Hearst's New York Journal American reported that the jurors who voted for acquittal had received threats and then published the home addresses of two of those jurors; in 1955, Kay Williams married Clark Gable (a resident of Lake Tahoe) at the county seat of Minden in a ceremony performed by justice of the peace Walter Fischer; in 1960, Dallas Frazier's Alley Oop by the Hollywood Argyles hit number one on the Billboard magazine chart (actually, there was no such group as the Argyles the song was recorded by Gary Paxton, who then had to form such a group when the record became a huge hit); in 1971, seventeen European parliaments selected the fourth movement of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, known as the "ode to joy", as the future anthem of Europe; in 2007, the International Association of Fire Fighters released Rudy Giuliani/Urban Legend, a video that made the case of New York City firefighters that Giuliani had endangered them by failing to support their request for modern radio equipment, the lack of which had caused firefighter deaths on September 11, 2001, and that he had established the city's emergency command center at the World Trade Center in spite of its status as a proven terrorist target.
On this date in 1850 Vice President Millard Fillmore became acting president after the death of President Taylor and immediately endorsed the Compromise of 1850 (admitting California as a free state while placating the south with passage of the fugitive slave law) which Taylor had opposed, prompting the resignation of the entire cabinet but also swinging half a dozen senators behind the compromise, which was approved; in 1867 Finley Peter Dunne, creator of "Mr. Dooley" and author of the classic definition of the role of a journalist (to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable) was born in Chicago; in 1869 U.S. Minister (ambassador) to Uruguay and Argentina Henry Worthington of Nevada notified the Uruguay government that his successor had been appointed; in 1918. the Churchill County Standard wrote: "arrangements are being made to suitably observe the anniversary of the Fall of the Bastille in France, which occurred on July 14, 1789. This event marks the downfall of despotism in our sister republic. A number of enthusiastic Fallon citizens have take the subject in hand and will endeavor to see that the Natal day of France, the best friend this country ever had among the nations of the earth, the country that gave us LaFayette and Rochambeau, shall be fittingly observed as we our own Fourth of July all over France this year."; in 1933 the LaSalle Club speakeasy in Las Vegas was shut down not because it served booze but because of a fight that left one man in the hospital and two in jail; in 1947 Congress gave final legislative approval to a proposal by President Truman removing the secretary of state and other members of the cabinet from the first places in line of succssion after the vice president and instead making the president's drinking buddies, the speaker of the house and president of the senate, second and third in the succession to the presidency; in 1959 the Nevada State Journal published a report by investigative reporter James Hulse on the huge sums of money being lost by the state government of Nevada as a result of land sales under an "archaic" state law; in 1959 longtime U.S. State Department staffer Helen Batjer of Smith Valley was assigned to the U.S. embassy in Belgrade; in 1964 the single Things We Said Today b/w A Hard Day's Night by the Beatles was released in Britain by Parlophone (by Capitol on July 13 in the U.S., but with I Should Have Known Better instead of Things), the soundtrack album for A Hard Day's Night was also released in Britain two weeks after the U.S. release (which was also a different version from the British one), and Liverpool hosted the second premiere of the film, drawing hundreds of thousands of fans who greeted the fab four on their return to their home town; in 1970 U.S. draft director Curtis Tarr, speaking in Reno, reacted to a U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning federal efforts to prevent conscientious objector status by proposing that COs be drafted for work on non-military projects; in 1985 the Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior was sunk after French intelligence agents attached bombs to its hull, killing a photographer on board; in 1985 responding to a flurry of bad publicity about New Coke, the Coca Cola Company said it would restore the original recipe, though since the recipe is a secret its not confirmable that it did so (the leader of the anti-New Coke campaign, when given a taste test by a newspaper, was unable to distinguish between the old and new Coca Cola).
- Men are nicer to the women they don't marry.
- I looked always outside of myself to see what I could make the world give me, instead of looking within myself to see what was there.
On this date in 1879 Secretary of the Senate John Burch said that if U.S. Senator William Sharon of California (elected from Nevada) tried to claim his salary then he (Burch) would submit the case to the controller of the U.S. Treasury (Sharon had shown up for work for only two months of his four years in office); in 1898 U.S. Representative Ebenezer Hill of Connecticut said in Seattle that he supported moving the Carson City branch of the U.S. Mint to Seattle; in 1904 William Jennings Bryan, facing the antagonism of his party after twice being nominated for president and losing both times, arrived at the Democratic National Convention where he created a sensation and re-won the allegiance of cheering delegates by making what many called the greatest speech of his life, an electrifying speech that began in absolute silence and ended in pandemonium: "Eight years ago a Democratic convention placed in my hands the standard of the party and gave me the commission as its candidate. Four years ago the commission was renewed. I come tonight to this Democratic convention to return the commission and to say that you may dispute whether I have fought a good fight, you may dispute whether I have finished my course, but you cannot deny that I have kept the faith." (August Belmont: "My God! I can now understand the power of the man."); in 1906 U.S. Senator William Clark (for whom Clark County, Nevada is named) of Montana endorsed William Jennings Bryan for a third Democratic presidential nomination; in 1925 the Scopes evolution trial began in Dayton, Tennessee with Clarence Darrow for the defense and William Jennings Bryan for the prosecution; in 1926 former Nebraska governor and Democratic vice presidential nominee Charles Bryan (brother of William Jennings Bryan) announced he would run again for governor (he lost but then was elected again in 1930); in 1931 New York speakeasy operator Belle Livingston arrived in Reno (she later opened a speakeasy called Belles Barn or the Cowshed at 2295 South Virginia Road, across the street from where Park Lane Mall was later located, and was busted there by prohibition agents); in 1947 the Las Vegas school board, struggling to cope with the baby boom, called for bids on the construction of ten more classrooms for two North Las Vegas schools and partitioning of the high school study hall into six classrooms; in 1955 California Governor Goodwin Knight signed legislation to create a California/Nevada Interstate Compact Commission to work on distribution of water in Lake Tahoe and the Carson, Truckee, and Walker rivers; in 1959 Zeppo Marx testified before a federal grand jury that a national betting syndicate was operating in Terre Haute and that he had lost perhaps $10,000 placing bets in Las Vegas; in 1984 Carolyn Anne Olsen was born at St. Mary's Hospital in Reno; in 1995 the last concert of the Grateful Dead was staged at Soldier Field in Chicago; in 2004 a Senate Intelligence Committee report found that the Central Intelligence Agency had supplied unfounded claims of the threat presented by Iraq.
On this date in 1853 Commodore Matthew Perry sailed a fleet into Tokyo Bay and, eventually, forced the Japanese government to establish diplomatic relations with the United States at the point of a gun; in 1863 Confederate forces at Port Hudson, Louisiana surrendered, giving the north command of the Mississippi which, together with union victories at Vicksburg and Gettysburg, turned the tide of the war and increased Lincoln's chances of reelection; in 1871 the New York Times began an investigative series on the operations of the New York City "Tweed ring" Democratic machine: "We lay before our readers this morning a chapter of municipal rascality which in any other city but New York would bring down upon the heads of its authors such a storm of public indignation as would force them to a speedy accountability before the bar of a criminal court, or compel them to take refuge in flight and perpetual exile." (boss William Tweed did eventually take flight, escaping from prison to Spain); in 1885 a fire in Carson City destroyed everything within two square blocks; in 1908 labor leader Morris Preston of Nevada notified the U.S. Socialist Labor Party that he was withdrawing from the presidential race as the party's nominee (see below); in 1909 American Motors president, Michigan governor, Republican presidential candidate, and U.S. cabinet member George Romney was born at the Mormon colony of Colonia Dublán, Chihuahua, Mexico; in 1918 Red Cross ambulance driver Ernest Hemingway was wounded on the Austro-Italo front of the world war, resulting in his hospitalization and romance with nurse Agnes von Kurowsky, who later jilted him, events dramatized in the Sandra Bullock film In Love and War; in 1924 William DeHart Hubbard won a gold medal in the running long jump at the Paris olympics, the first African American to win an individual medal; in 1932 the Dow closed at 41.22, lowest of the Depression years (though not of the Dow's history); in 1936 Frank Ingram, state director of the national emergency council (a depression agency), said Nevada had an excess of hay in Lovelock, Fallon, and Yerington and could accept 50,000 cattle from the drought stricken midwest; in 1941 in his journal, German General Franz Halder wrote of Hitlers grisly plans for the eastern front: "Fuhrer is firmly determined to level Moscow and Leningrad to the ground, and to dispose fully of their population, which otherwise we shall have to feed during the winter."; in 1959 Major Dale Ruis and Sergeant Chester Ovnand, generally regarded as the first casualties of the U.S. war in Vietnam, were killed at Bien Hoa; in 1966 the album Yesterday and Today by the Beatles (a U.S. collection of leftovers that had been trimmed by Capitol from Rubber Soul and other records) went gold; in 1988 Iranian Speaker Hashemi Rafsanjani responded to the U.S. shooting down an Iran passenger airliner by pointing out that the U.S. was allied with Iran's enemy Iraq and ruling out revenge against the U.S.: "The U.S. is trying to push us to commit the same crime. But if we did that the world would turn against us."; in 1999 a desert storm dumped three inches of rain on Las Vegas, causing two deaths and the closure of 40 roads and intersections; in 2007 four years after its gullible reporting and unquestioning news coverage helped the Bush administration launch the war on Iraq, the New York Times called for an end to the war: "It is time for the United States to leave Iraq, without any more delay than the Pentagon needs to organize an orderly exit."
July 9 1908/New York Times:
From Nevada Prison He Tells So-
cialist Labor Party He Can't Be
Candidate for President.
________SEEKING A SUBSTITUTE
Other Presidential Timber Not Up to
His Standard, the Leaders
Dismay spread in the ranks of the Socialist Labor Party yesterday when it was announced by the National Executive Committee that convict Martin R. Preston of Goldfield, Nev., who is serving a twenty-five year sentence for murder, had declined the nomination for President of the United States.
The information came in a private telegram from Preston to Leader Daniel De Leon in which the nominee expresses his regret at his inability to accept the honor of the nomination for President, and says that he "depends upon the generosity that nominated him to understand his excuses."
De Leon had gone to the country yesterday, but leading members of the National Executive Committee were in town ready to appoint a substitute for President.
When De Leon placed the name of Preston in nomination at the convention on Sunday the decision to make him the Presidential candidate even though he was below the legal age of 35 was considered a body blow to capitalism, as no one thought for a moment that he would decline. The party apparently believed they had scored heavily against the Socialists in nominating a man who had actually been convicted of homicide, while all the Socialist Party could do was to nominate Eugene V. Debs, who served no more than a jail sentence, and that over ten years ago.
The committee said that if Preston could not be induced to change his mind some other comrade would be substituted for him. The members of the Executive Committee will try to get Peter McDermott of Providence, R.I., to accept the nomination in case Preston is firm in his refusal to accept. McDermott is one of the charter members of the party, but has never been a convict.
[Preston, whose murder conviction was obtained through payments by political boss George Wingfield, was later given a posthumous pardon. Preston was replaced as Socialist Labor presidential nominee by August Gillhaus.]
Television critic John Crosby/New York Herald Tribune: There have been some dull See It Now shows, and some have been better than others, but it is by every criterion television's most brilliant, most decorated, most imaginative, most courageous and most important program. The fact that CBS cannot afford it but can afford Beat the Clock is shocking.
On this date in 1863 Lt. Colonel Christopher "Kit" Carson departed Sante Fe to begin a vicious campaign against the Navajo inhabitants of the southwest, using terror tactics and forced marches that resulted in the loss to the tribe of huge swaths of land; in 1869 William Martin, owner of the 6 Mile House hotel and road station six miles west of Hamilton, Nevada on the Egan Road, was killed by stage robbers; in 1896 during debates on the party platform at the Democratic National Convention, former U.S. representative William Jennings Bryan of Nebraska electified the delegates with a speech denouncing the gold standard, after which a pro-silver platform plank was adopted and Bryans presidential candidacy was enhanced; in 1900 a drunken and abusive Warren Earp was killed by John Boyett in a saloon gunfight in Willcox, Arizona; in 1906 Leroy Robert "Satchel" Paige, legendary pitcher in the Negro Southern Association, the Negro American League, and the Negro National League, was born in Mobile (Paige was so skilled and in command on the mound that he sometimes toyed with the other team, deliberately walking the bases full and then striking out the side); in 1930 President Hoover signed the Boulder Dam legislation and construction reportedly began the same day; in 1940 Richard Starkey was born in the Dingle neighborhood of Liverpool; in 1941 the U.S. pose of neutrality was strained when it occupied Iceland to free up British forces for Mediterranean service; in 1946 Bob Stoddard's radio station KATO (later KBET) began broadcasting from offices in the Elks Club at Sierra and First Streets in Reno; in 1958 See It Now, the distinguished news program produced by Edward R. Murrow and Fred Friendly, was taken off the air by CBS chair William Paley; in 1963 the Mat Vu (secret police of the U.S.-backed south Vietnamese dictatorship) attacked and beat Associated Press reporter Peter Arnett, who was covering a Buddhist anti-government protest (New York Times reporter David Halberstam intervened to defend the bloodied Arnett, and the U.S. embassy refused to protest the attack, suggesting U.S. complicity); in 1970 the Nevada Public Service Commission held a hearing on an application for "J.C. Bus Lines Ltd" a proposed city bus service for Reno owned by brothel owner Joe Conforte; in 2003 the U.S. Senate appointed Dr. Barry Black to be the first African American senate chaplain; in 2008 there are 197 days remaining until the next U.S. presidential inaugural.
On this date in 1894 two whites, James and Charles Mooney, recorded Piute, Arapaho, and Kiowa songs, including the ghost dance and a mescal piece, which are now in the Library of Congress; in 1915 William Jennings Bryan spoke on peace at the Panama Pacific Exposition in San Francisco; in 1933 because of the falling level of the Truckee River, users with water rights dating after 1900 were cut off for any purposes other than watering stock; in 1952 U.S. Senator George Malone of Nevada published "Development Program/State of Nevada/A Report to the Stockholders, The People of the State of Nevada."; in 1957 after a four year separation, Ava Gardner divorced Frank Sinatra in Mexico City.; in 1970 a columnist for the Nevada State Journal reported that state Native Americans were angry with U.S. Senators Howard Cannon and Alan Bible of Nevada for cosponsoring legislation that would take money earned by tribes and hold it for them in "trust" accounts; in 2007 the Washington Post's John Solomon wrote a 1,288-word story about presidential candidate John Edwards' hair, including this self-critical sentence: "It is some kind of commentary on the state of American politics that as Edwards has campaigned for president, vice president and now president again, his hair seems to have attracted as much attention as, say, his position on health care."
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George Bush / July 4, 2007: More than two decades later, it is hard to imagine the Revolutionary War coming out any other way
On this date in 1675 King Philip's War (named for Wampanoag tribal leader Metacomet, known to whites as King Philip), an assault by colonial whites against natives that lasted almost two years, began; in 1799 children born to slaves in New York after this date remained slaves only until age 28 (males) or 25 (females); in 1817 near Rome, New York, ground was broken for the Erie Canal; in 1828 Charles Carroll, last surviving signer of the declaration, celebrated at a Baltimore ceremony; in 1864 the second Nevada constitutional convention began in Carson City; in 1867 the Virginia City Miners Union was formed; in 1884 John H. Kinkead of Nevada, a former resident from 1867 to 1874 of Alaska in Sitka and governor of Nevada from 1879 to 1883, took office by the appointment of President Arthur to be the first civilian governor of Alaska; in 1899 Mark Twain spoke to the American Society in London (see below); in 1903 Oglala Lakota statesman Red Cloud spoke a farewell message to his people (see below); in 1918 Spanish American War veterans held a picnic at Bowers Mansion; in 1925 at Battery Park in New York, the Women's Peace Union read a declaration of independence from war; in 1930 on the lodge notices page of the Oakland Tribune along with the Oddfellows and Pythian Sisters, there were fourteen chapters of the Ku Klux Klan listed; in 1939 U.S. nazis marched in Andover, New Jersey; in 1946 the United States avoided United Nations oversight of its Phillippines colony by granting token independence to the islands after a half-century of occupation, but retained effective control of Filipino trade and politics and maintained a military presence there; in 1962 Nevada Lieutenant Governor Rex Bell died at a political event while campaigning for governor; in 1976 on this bicentennial Fourth of July, Channel 5 in Levittown/Kingston, New York both showed Dig That Uranium, a 1956 Bowery Boys movie in which the Boys sell a mine in Nevada, Alistair Cooke wrote approvingly of pioneer judges in Nevada mining cases, the Fresno Bee ran a story about an early Nevada editor who founded a temperance colony, Ann Landers answered a letter from "Nevada Girl Friday", and the Bucks County Courier Times reported on a helicopter dropping supplies to a commemorative wagon train crossing the Nevada desert; in 1976 syndicated columnist Jack Anderson reported that some members of Congress had responded to a 1967 congressional nepotism rule (which barred employing members of one's own family) by hiring each other's relatives, with the daughter of U.S. Senator Paul Laxalt of Nevada hired by Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska.
Mark Twain / London American Society / July 4, 1899: But I notice they have considered this day merely from one side its sentimental, patriotic, poetic side. But it has another side. It has a commercial, a business side that needs reforming. It has a historical side.I do not say "an" historical side, because I am speaking the American language. I do not see why our cousins should continue to say "an" hospital, "an" historical fact, "an" horse. It seems to me the Congress of Women, now in session, should look to it. I think "an" is having a little too much to do with it. It comes of habit, which accounts for many things.
Yesterday, for example, I was at a luncheon party. At the end of the party a great dignitary of the English Established Church went away half an hour before anybody else and carried off my hat. Now, that was an innocent act on his part. He went out first, and of course had the choice of hats. As a rule I try to get out first myself. But I hold that it was an innocent, unconscious act, due, perhaps, to heredity. He was thinking about ecclesiastical matters, and when a man is in that condition of mind he will take anybody's hat. The result was that the whole afternoon I was under the influence of his clerical hat and could not tell a lie. Of course, he was hard at it.
It is a compliment to both of us. His hat fitted me exactly; my hat fitted him exactly. So I judge I was born to rise to high dignity in the Church some how or other, but I do not know what he was born for. That is an illustration of the influence of habit, and it is perceptible here when they say "an" hospital, "an" European, "an" historical.
The business aspects of the Fourth of July is not perfect as it stands. See what it costs us every year with loss of life, the crippling of thousands with its fireworks, and the burning down of property. It is not only sacred to patriotism sand universal freedom, but to the surgeon, the undertaker, the insurance offices--and they are working, it for all it is worth.
I am pleased to see that we have a cessation of war for the time. This coming from me, a soldier, you will appreciate. I was a soldier in the Southern war for two weeks, and when gentlemen get up to speak of the great deeds our army and navy have recently done, why, it goes all through me and fires up the old war spirit. I had in my first engagement three horses shot under me. The next ones went over my head, the next hit me in the back. Then I retired to meet an engagement.
I thank you, gentlemen, for making even a slight reference to the war profession, in which I distinguished myself, short as my career was.
Red Cloud / July 4, 1903: My sun is set. My day is done. Darkness is stealing over me. Before I lie down to rise no more, I will speak to my people.
Hear me, my friends, for it is not the time for me to tell you a lie. The Great Spirit made us, the Indians, and gave us this land we live in. He gave us the buffalo, the antelope, and the deer for food and clothing. We moved our hunting grounds from the Minnesota to the Platte and from the Mississippi to the great mountains. No one put bounds on us. We were free as the winds, and like the eagle, heard no man's commands.
I was born a Lakota and I shall die a Lakota. Before the white man came to our country, the Lakotas were a free people. They made their own laws and governed themselves as it seemed good to them. The priests and ministers tell us that we lived wickedly when we lived before the white man came among us. Whose fault was this? We lived right as we were taught it was right. Shall we be punished for this? I am not sure that what these people tell me is true.
As a child I was taught the Taku Wakan [spiritual powers] were powerful and could do strange things. This was taught me by the wise men and the shamans. They taught me that I could gain their favor by being kind to my people and brave before my enemies; by telling the truth and living straight; by fighting for my people and their hunting grounds.
When the Lakotas believed these things they were happy and they died satisfied. What more than this can that which the white man offers us give?
Taku Shanskan is familiar with my spirit and when I die I will go with him. Then I will be with my forefathers. If this is not in the heaven of the white man I shall be satisfied. Wi is my father. The Wakan Tanka of the white man has overcome him. But I shall remain true to him.
Shadows are long and dark before me. I shall soon lie down to rise no more. While my spirit is with my body the smoke of my breath shall be towards the Sun for he knows all things and knows that I am still true to him.
On this date in 1890 for reasons that have never been entirely clear, Idaho was made a state; in 1909 the Comstock began a three day celebration of its 50th anniversary; in 1911 Washoe County began a three day celebration of its 50th anniversary; in 1926 the Nevada Labor Federation convention renewed its support of an amendment to the U.S. constitution outlawing child labor; in 1933 an archeological expedition reported finding a well-preserved three-story cliff dwelling containing hundreds of rooms near the Arizona border south of Bluff, Utah, "stored away in a canyon where the suns rays never penetrate"; in 1933 in a competition with rival cowboy actor Ken Maynard at the National Air Races in Los Angeles, Hoot Gibson's plane crashed but he survived; in 1936 Austrian Stefan Lux, a reporter for a Czech newspaper, called out "C'est le dernier coup" (This is the last blow) and then killed himself in the League of Nations assembly hall to draw attention to the plight of Jews in Germany; in 1941 German forces crossed the Dvina River from Lithuania into Latvia as they swept through the Baltics; in 1962 following an eight-year nationalist revolt, Algeria regained its independence after 132 years of French rule; in 1970 at the behest of the Downtown Casino Association, the American Independent Party of Nevada, and local law enforcement agencies, the Las Vegas city commission rushed through an "emergency" ordinance in an effort to stop a five-hour rock festival at Cashman Field featuring Janis Joplin, B.B. King, Country Joe and the Fish, the Youngbloods, and the Illinois Transit (on July 5 Georgia Governor Lester Maddox requested a law outlawing rock festivals in his state); in 1971 a journalist's dream in Sedalia, Missouri man bites dog: Newton Foster was fined $25 for disorderly conduct after Lulu Mae Scroggins (honest!) brought her dog Shoe-Shoe Baby (it just gets better and better) to court and showed the bite mark, a one-inch wound on the flank; in 1988 the United States, which in 1983 had said there could be no excuse for the Soviet shootdown of Korean Airlines flight 007, shot down Iran Air flight 655, supposedly under the impression it was a military aircraft; in 2002 doctors at Las Vegas' only trauma center went out on strike to protest the cost of their malpractice insurance and to protest lawyers who represented malpractice victims.
UPDATE WEDNESDAY 7-2-2008, 9:56 p.m. PDT, 04:56 GMT/SUT/CUT EXCLUSIVE: Teamsters talks with Reno-Sparks bus system collapse, union basically dared to strike
UPDATE WEDNESDAY 7-2-2008, 9:42 a.m. PDT, 16:42 GMT/SUT/CUT Happy Independence Day!
DENNIS MYERS / RENO NEWS & REVIEW / 7-2-2008
Today is Independence Day.
Yes, if you look at your calendar, its the fourth that is in red. The calendar is wrong. So was the Congress that first declared the fourth a holiday, and so are innumerable fourth of July orators.
Independence Day falls on the day independence was declared. Independence was declared on July 2, 1776. Here is the resolution passed that day, written by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia: "Resolved, That these united colonies are and of right ought to be free and independent states; that they are absolved from all allegiances to the british [sic] crown and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain is and ought to be totally dissolved."
The next night, John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail: "Philadelphia, 3 July But the Day is past. The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more. You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Days Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not." (Emphasis added.)
So how did we end up celebrating the wrong day? Because the Declaration of Independence was dated the fourth and in the early days of the republic few people knew when independence was actually declared because the records were not easily available. (And according to historian Richard Shenkman, it took a long time for even the fourth to become a holiday, because in the early days it was used as a raucous celebration of political party divisions.) By the time the Adams letter quoted above came to light, many years after his death, the fourth was so well established as Independence Day that Adams family altered the language of the letter to change the dates cited.
Does it matter? It depends on what we consider important. It was the vote on the second that put the lives of the founders on the line. I mean that literally. A century before the American Revolution, the British crown had faced another revolt, in the English civil war. The 59 signers of the death warrant of the duplicitous Charles I, too, put their lives on the line. If their rebellion failed and the monarchy was reestablished, they would be prime candidates for execution themselves.
"Their lives would never be the same again," wrote Alexander Winston in 1964. "For the next decade they struggled to make a success of the Commonwealth government and, failing, watched in despair the Stuart Restoration of 1660."
When Charles II became king, the surviving members of the 59 were hunted down and killed. Even those who had died before the restoration were dug up and "abused," whatever that meant, and their heirs stripped of their estates. A dozen of the 59 escaped England. Three went to North America and lived in hiding until their deaths, sometimes having to live in forests or caves to escape royal agents who arrived in pursuit. People in New England "defied royal authority to protect the outcasts."
That was what awaited those who voted for independence on July 2. That sacrifice, not the paperwork that followed, deserves recognition.
It might be suggested that July 4 should be celebrated because thats the day the Declaration was signed. Except it wasnt. It was signed by most of the delegates on August 2. Only two of the delegates signed on the fourth.
Its hard to believe that a nation so contemptuous of paperwork and bureaucracy prefers honoring the Declaration of Independence over the declaration of independence.
Resolution declaring independence / adopted by Congress July 2d 1776: Resolved: That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.
Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams: Philadelphia, 3 July...But the Day is past. The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more. You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Days Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not. [When this letter was revealed years later by Abigail's nephew William Shaw, the nation had already begun celebrating the wrong date, so Shaw altered the text before releasing it, re-dating it July 5 and changing the first line to read "The Fourth Day of July."]
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On July 2, 1776, the Continental Congress declared independence from England; in 1776, all New Jersey residents, women and African-Americans included, obtained the right to vote, a state of affairs that continued until 1807; in 1829, the Oblate Sisters, the first African-American order of nuns, was founded; in 1881, President Garfield was shot in a railroad station (he lingered on for eleven weeks before dying, the longest period of executive disability until Woodrow Wilson); in 1908, future NAACP legal counsel, U.S. solicitor general, and U.S. supreme court justice Thurgood Marshall was born in Baltimore; in 1909, the former Coney Island amusement park on the Sparks/Reno road was reopened as a tourist court; in 1917, encouraged by the Wilson administration's raids against political radicals as well as Woodrow Wilson's own anti-black policies, vigilantism exploded in East St. Louis as white rioting targeted African-Americans (the official count of the dead was 39, but newspaper reports at the time said 200); in 1932, Franklin Roosevelt was nominated for president by the Democratic Party; in 1937, U.S. Army Air Force pilot Major J.G. Frierson took off from March Field in Moreno Valley, California, for Palm Springs a few miles to the east, and put down four and a half hours later in Las Vegas ("We flew around...without the least idea where we were...I figured we might be as far north as Idaho and maybe into Wyoming"); in 1946, the U.S. Senate was insisting on an Atomic Energy Commission under civilian authority, while the House wanted the atomic energy program under military control; in 1956, backed for the first time by The Jordanaires, Elvis recorded Don't Be Cruel, Anyway You Want Me and Hound Dog; in 1970, Larry Ray Brenner, son of Virginia Brenner of Las Vegas, died in Phuoc Long province, Vietnam (Panel 09W line 109 of the Vietnam wall); in 1970, three years before Roe vs. Wade, the national convention of the Lutheran Church in America endorsed abortion; in 1977, the Nevada Supreme Court ruled that the law creating the Clark County Commission was unconstitutional and ordered that the seven incumbent commissioners be removed from office and that the governor appoint replacements (Governor Mike O'Callaghan said he would reappoint the same people who were being removed); in 1982, truck driver Larry Walters of Los Angeles tied 42 helium filled balloons to his lawn chair and floated aloft, reaching 16,000 feet (three miles) where two pilots, for TWA and Delta, radioed sightings of him (imagine getting those reports), earning a $1,500 fine from federal aviation officials and becoming a folk hero for his 90 minute flight; in 2003, George Bush invited attacks on the U.S. forces he sent to Iraq: "There are some who feel like that the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is, bring them on."
UPDATE TUESDAY 7-1-2008, 9:05 a.m. PDT, 16:05 GMT/SUT/CUT On this date in 1775, the Continental Congress resolved that "the colonies ought to avail themselves of an Alliance with such Indian Nations as will enter into the same to oppose such British troops and their Indian Allies" (most tribes passed up the chance and allied with the Brits); in 1880, the Steamboat Ditch outside Reno was completed; in 1892, L'Osservatore romano, the official Vatican newspaper, argued that "Anti-Semitism ought to be the natural, sober, thoughtful, Christian reaction against Jewish predominance"; in 1909, the Philadelphia mint began producing the new penny, with Lincoln replacing the Native American; in 1914, James Scrugham began serving as dean of the University of Nevada School of Engineering at a salary of $3000 (he would later become owner of the Nevada State Journal, governor, U.S. representative, and U.S. senator); in 1942 in Reno, movie star cowboy Buck Jones appeared at a "Victory Day" observance, and the city completed its quota of $50,000 in defense stamp and bond sales; in 1943, a Paris radio broadcast said the Vichy governor of Martinique had asked the U.S. to intervene to aid a transition of the island from collaborationist control to free French control; in 1956, the Highway Revenue Act, enacted by Congress to pay for the interstate highway system, took effect; in 1958, a two day special session of the Nevada Legislature, held to change state law so the state could take advantage of a federal extension of jobless pay of workers who had exhausted their benefits, ended; in 1963, The Beatles recorded She Loves You, a song that was a smashing hit in Canada and Britain but died when it was released in the United States on the Swan label three months before Beatlemania broke out in the U.S.; in 1963, the Sparks telephone prefix was changed from Elgin to Fleetwood, not that it mattered since both of them spell "35" and because on this date the phone company also switched from word prefixes to all-number phone numbers; in 1965, the newly created Nevada State Archives began operating; in 1968, the U.S./Saigon Phoenix program, a campaign of assassination against Vietnamese village leaders, was launched; in 2000, Oglala Sioux police officer Kelmer One Feather died in the line of duty in South Dakota; in 2007, the campaign of presidential candidate Barack Obama jolted the political world by announcing that he had raised a record $58 million, bettering the total of supposed frontrunner Hillary Clinton.
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