Sunday, April 15, 2018

Even truer today


Joe Formerlyof Brooklyn said...

I apologize with this Reality Intrusion:

1. Anyone who believes the "Founding Fathers" engineered a revolution from Great Britain is deluded. Almost all of the leaders owed Big Money to British banks. Had the colonies remained a Britiah possession, almost all of them (Geo. Wash, Tom Jeff. included) would have been imprisoned. You can look this up!

Our country was founded on Debt. We now collectively owe $20trillion (plus) as a nation. Our current President built his empire on debt. Our previous President ran up an astounding 8-year total of additional debt. This is the way it is. You can't change it, you can't really deny it -- and no sense bemoaning it.

2. The U.S. Army did not win WWII, at least in Europe. The USSR did. You can certainly find this information (don't look for it in the movies). We always see the Russians as crazy people, bent on world domination. We don't look thru the other end of the telescope.

Similarly: The "West" promised the Soviets that we would not tuck NATO right up to the Russian border. 5 seconds later, we started doing it.

Putin ain't no saint. But he's got reasons to hate the West -- not trust us -- and be eternally vigilant (and suspicious) of us.

3. The Lords of Baseball are rich men, and have been for a while. Babe Ruth came to the Yankees in exchange for a mess of money ($125,000). The guy who ran the Red Sox didn't sell him to the Yankees to improve baseball. The guys who ran the Yankees did a calculation based on cold, hard cash.

Remember: It took a really determined guy (Curt Flood) to win financial freedom for ballplayers of serious ability. The owners didn't hand this over; it was won in a courtroom.

HoraceClarke66 said...

1) Never heard about the British banks before, Joe. But I do know that what Washington really, really wanted was to be a British officer and gentleman. Instead, the British troops over here for the French & Indian War treated George and all the other colonials with ill-concealed contempt.

For that matter, the Brits should've just given us the vote, thereby providing the "representation" in "taxation without representation." Why not, we did not have a significant population at the time. But that would've drawn into question the kingdom's own "rotten boroughs," and sparked unrest. So, they essentially decided to run their own Vietnam instead.

2) According to John Keegan, the Soviets—who did indeed make an amazingly valiant sacrifice in WW II—could not have advanced beyond Poland without U.S. war materiel. For that matter, Stalin's idiotic idea to make a "deal" with Hitler went a long way toward starting the war in the first place.

Putin is a former KGB officer. And smart enough that he can't possibly believe that Russia had anything to fear from an invasion by all those war-mongering modern Europeans.

What possibly makes you believe he does anything for the benefit of "Russia," as opposed to the benefit of "Putin"?

3) Baseball owners are scum. AGREED!

Boy, these rainouts do drive us to desperate lengths!

Anonymous said...







Leinstery said...

Many of those guys were in debt because they were getting taxed up the wazzo. Many were landowners and businessmen and with all those taxes they were bound to have to borrow money.

Yeah throwing 20 million Soviets at the Germans certainly help, but as Horace pointed out the US propped them up materially until they found their footing. The Russians drove made their own tanks, but used American trucks and Jeeps. Furthermore US bombing crippled the German war machine and thus was outproduced and overrun by the Soviets. They also only fought a one front war, we had to deal with Tojo.

Now as far as why the russians don't like us, it goes as far back as when the Golden Horde showed up 1223. Rus, as it was known, appealed to the west for help and they told them they were busy. Russia was either directly controlled or subservient to the Mongols for about 200 years, and when they drove them out, the west didn't help. And yes they don't like the West because they feel that we didn't make that big of a sacrifice in WW2 compared to them. They can blame papa Stalin and the military doctrine they had. Maybe don't throw wave after wave of unarmed soldiers at fortified machine gun nests.

As far as NATO, these countries that border Russia want in because they despise Russia. The Baltic states sure loved when they were "liberated" from Germany when Soviet soldiers raped and murdered their way through their nations and then were absorbed into that shitpile country USSR. Poland sure loved when the Soviets lured the democratic leaders in exile to a meeting only to arrest and kill them (Circa 1944-45). Russia can hate the world as much as it wants, but they sure ain't no saints and are delusional to think of themselves as victims.

Geez, two rainouts have us talking about nonsense. Oh well, Sonny Gray sucks and is worse than Phil Hughes.

HoraceClarke66 said...

It's funny. Every Russian I've ever met absolutely loves the U.S.

Now granted, this is a pretty unrepresentative group. All people who have come here voluntarily, and some of whom have married Americans. But they love this country, they love American life.

You mention anything about their country or their heritage, though, and they go nuts, all defensive.

I imagine it's like that all over. I know I bitch about this or that regarding American life. Put me in a room with two Western Europeans for five minutes, I'm the biggest super-patriot you ever saw.

And yes, I completely agree: give me Phil Hughes or give me death! But NOT Sonny Gray!

Hughes was a gopherball fool. But he never looked scared to be out there. We could have used him at Stalingrad.

HoraceClarke66 said...

P.S.: Go see "The Death of Stalin." Hilarious. In a kind of darkly awful Russian way.

13bit said...

I am so tired assholes on the Internet. See you all around the ranch.

KD said...

was with my family in West Germany during the early 1980s. my mother wanted to visit some well-known knitting store in Hamburg (as I recall. May have been some other Northern German city.) She needed some hard to find yarn. The woman that ran the store was a girl during the war and my WWII veteran father drew her into a conversation. Near the end the entire town was in dread of what could possibly become of them should the Russian Army be the first to arrive. To their over-whelming joy, it was the Americans instead. She actually thanked my father for being part of that army and the kindness that was shown to her and other people in her beaten town. He was so grateful for her kind words.

John M said...

If you want to begin to understand the mess in Syria, Crimea, and more, plus the reasons the Russians are what they are, read "The Corporation That Changed the World" and "The Great Game." All of this stuff has deep roots, and all of it just keeps continuing today. I'm sure there are equally good books on the Baltics and Eastern Europe in regards to Russia. (Who, btw, crushed a revolution in Hungary in the 19th century, when it seemed the whole continent was undergoing revolutions.)

As for WWII, Russia kept pleading for help as its guys were getting slaughtered fighting Germany, but Churchill (if you read "The Great Game," you'll see why this was especially galling coming from the Brits) insisted to FDR that the US liberate and protect British oil holdings in the Middle East first. A lot of Russkies died because of that. I don't know about the Poland thing, but I do recall that the Allies knew Russia would reach Berlin first and did everything they could so it wouldn't happen (not necessarily anything nefarious, just saying).

The problem with some alt-interpreters of history is, they take a binary view. Nothing can be complex, nothing can have more than one reason or be at all messy. The Founders may have owed money to Brit banks, but that doesn't negate the idea that they also wanted freedom and spent a lot of time writing and thinking about the kind of country we should be, as opposed to the kind England and the rest of the world was at the time.

And Horace, I'm looking forward to that movie. Russian-type humor is great, as is Austrian-type humor, both well-rooted in the historical experience of their people. But it's baseball season, so let's have a beer and who cares....

HoraceClarke66 said...

Hey, I hear ya, John M. And I violated my own rule in talking about non-baseball subjects. But three straight rainouts...

I'll just say that yes, you're right that Churchill—despite various, inaccurate movies of late—did indeed fight the war with the interests of the British Empire first in mind.

But to say that we helped him is not, I think, accurate. He was always mad that we weren't doing more for the empire. And as noted before, we poured materiel into the Soviet Union, and helped them by bombing the hell out of Germany (which also helped us, of course).

The big debate was when we should attack the continent. Some wanted to go in 1943, but Russians and British aside, there was a lot of fear that we weren't ready—and who could blame us? We'd barely restarted the army.

Ironically, contrary to what your writers may be claiming now, FDR, Truman and other Democrats took a constant beating from the right after the war for "letting" the Soviets get to Berlin first.

The fact was that Truman let Ike decide. Ike thought that a race there would be too costly in terms of American dead and wounded—and considering the fact that, I believe, 100,000 Russians died taking the city, he was right.

Of course, after the war, when he was running for president, he blamed it all on Truman. Harry never spoke to him again!

Alphonso said...

I didn't realize a rainy day could motivate such a great perspective on history. Well done, lads.

HoraceClarke66 said...


Another thing that's weird: we're STILL dealing with the consequences of the Ottoman Empire and the old Russian Empire breaking up—both of which happened over a hundred years ago.

It does go to show you: it's always easier to break things up than to put them together again.

And that's your Trite Maxim of Today! Remember, when you want to say something trite, say it with TMT! You provide the scenario, we'll provide the perfectly obvious thing to say about it!

Der Kaiser said...

I just read this comment thread and am amazed. When I first discovered this blog a few years back, I never would have imagined that it was the only place on the internet where a reasonable and civil discussion of history and international politics could occur. I'm proud of everyone involved.

Nevertheless, I would prefer to hear about idiotic roster decisions, wacky home run calls, and what everyone is drinking tonight.

KD said...

Der Kaiser: take one thin slice of Valencia orange and muddle with one Luxardo cherry. (option: add 1/4 teaspoon of simple syrup). Add 3 fl oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon, then ONE large ice cube of spring water (I use RO water).

You guys need to try Buffalo Trace.

This is the KD Official Yankees Old Fashioned for the 2018 season.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Mmmm. Buffalo Trace. Though I'm a Woodford Reserve man, myself. And this new Hudson stuff is pretty good.

KD said...

so much good stuff out there Hoss. and here I am with only one liver...