The FIRST Witch Hunt was the worst one…

Ah, the President of the United States does love to mangle American History.  This morning he set to his favorite Historical Misappropriation Delivery Tool… Twitter and said:

djt salem

Well, actually… no.  The single greatest Witch Hunt in American political history was the one that actually gave you the name with which you use: witch hunt!  Now whether his is the second or 200th can be debated, but not the “single greatest”.  Continue reading

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Would Jackson have stopped the Civil War? Yes and No: History is Complicated.

It’s hard to keep up with the current President’s wild historic thoughts, so I finally have the time to dig in on this now moldy tweet about Andrew Jackson stopping the Civil War…

trump jackson

At first blush, it’s no surprise that Trump would have an affinity for Jackson.  He had visited Jackson’s home six weeks earlier than his tweet.  It is oft reported that the last things in POTUS’s head contribute greatly to his positions, often contradicting those he had earlier or those of his staff moments before the change of direction. Continue reading

The Original #fakenews was Born on Today in 1770

In 2017 #fakenews does not really mean the news is false, but is now broadly interpreted as being “made up” to fit a narrative. The current President likes to hammer on CNN and the New York Times as “fake news” but nothing in what they report is false.  To the partisan eye it may be intentionally misleading, but it is not fake.

That said it was on this day in 1770 that #fakenews may have been born. The setting: a group of protesters become increasingly angry at government presence. Tempers flare and violence ensues.  When the smoke clears 5 lay dead and seven are wounded.  Those are the facts that could be readily agreed upon by all — but it is not how it will be presented to America. Continue reading

Much ado About Nothing: Trump’s Month One

The first month of President Trump’s term has been marked by turmoil.  What your politics are determines what that turmoil is.  For the political left, it has been one gobsmacking outrage after another.  For the right, it has been a hounding media blowing up every little Trump tweet and tither into a scandal of Watergate proportions.  But if you sift through the silt, you will see that President Trump hasn’t really done much governing at all in his first month.

While Trump was swift to issue a torrent of Executive Orders, he is ahead of the typical president but lags behind President Obama.  Trump issued 12 Executive Orders in his first month, Obama had 16.  Trump actually takes 3rd place, with Harry S. Truman edging him out by a single order.  By comparison, George W. Bush issued 7, Bill Clinton 6.  Continue reading

Robert E Lee, MLK and Southern Heritage

Making rounds of the internet this week was a Biloxi, Mississippi city government posting that referenced that Martin Luther King Day also being known officially as Great Americans Day, which was started in 1985 by the city. Turns out Robert E. Lee was born the same week (albeit a century earlier) as MLK.  Biloxi likely started this in response to President Reagan signing the law in 1983 that the holiday would become federally recognized in 1986.  So it gives this damned Yankee an opportunity to dig into the hero worship of the great Virginian general of the Civil War and examine his place in Southern Heritage.

Robert E. Lee’s success on the battlefield was unparalleled. In reality he only lost two twice as a commander, one at Gettysburg and a final time where he surrendered his troops at Appomattox Courthouse in what is wrongly attributed as the end of the Civil War (it would continue elsewhere in the south for six more weeks or so).   Celebration as a great General, even though many of these were waged against the United States, I suppose is due. But throughout the land there are not nearly as many George Patton statues nor street names. Continue reading