Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Right-Wing Versus Left-Wing History Problems

Its that during different periods in the past the two sides have had different positions on the issues.  For example, in 1960 left wing politicians such as Rockefeller (R) and JFK (D) favored greater defense spending while more right-wing pols such as Nixon (R) did not.  One can cite many more examples.

Here’s the core of the problem.

As American civilization has grown, American government has not grown at the same pace.  The gaps between the size of government and the need for government has caused the problem.  During the 19th. Century government was smaller than was needed while in recent decades the government has been larger than needed. 


When did the government tax too much, regulate too much, and spend too much?  - And when did it do those things too little?  Different times, different answers.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Intellectual Origins of the Republican Party

The Republican Party was never a minor (third) party. In 1854 it simply replaced the Whig Party as the major party opposing the Democrats. The immediate cause of this was the Democrats’ Kansas-Nebraska Bill of that year which largely negated the Compromise of 1850. But this event alone could not have explained a sudden transformation of American politics of this magnitude.

So, what did cause all of this? The best contemporary explanation can be found in Abraham Lincoln’s first speech in his famous debate with the Kansas-Nebraska Acts chief author, Stephen Douglas.

“Under the Dred Scott decision “squatter sovereignty” squatted out of existence, tumbled down like temporary scaffolding.


Read more:  http://dld.bz/fZQKh

Sunday, August 13, 2017

The Gunpowder Plot

In 1605 Guy Fawkes and his co-conspirators planned the greatest act of terrorism of all time.  They waited months until England’s Parliament met.  When the King, the Lords, the Cabinet, the High Clergy, and well, everybody else was in one place, they planned to set the fuse. They placed enough barrels of explosives under Parliament to blow the whole shebang sky high.  Fortunately, one of the plotters sent a letter to a friend warning him to stay away.  That friend turned the letter in and that’s how the authorities discovered the plot.

Imagine the scene when the government officials first discovered the barrels of gunpowder and Guy Fawkes guarding them.  Talk about being caught red-handed!


Today History Moments begins a series on this:  http://dld.bz/fZDtX

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Historians Need to Produce More History

And less politics.  It seems that all of the history sites are talking about Trump instead of historical topics.  Take History News Network produced by George Washington University, for example.  http://historynewsnetwork.org/

Its mission is to cover the history field but hit the link above to see what it has become.  Virtually every article is about him.  Him.  That guy.

Authors are supposed to submit resumes together with their articles to ensure that they are authorities on the topics they submit.  What does that matter anymore when all of the articles resemble a newspaper op-ed?

Yes, I know that not all of the history sites are doing this.  And I admit that I produce political content from time to time, though pieces such as that Nancy Pelsosi Fact File is for education purposes only.  My Fact File pieces only list biographical information that is essential.  These and all current history posts by myself constitute only a tiny part of History Moments output.


My complaint isn’t that history sites produce some politics; my complaint is when the politics crowd the history content right out.

Nancy Pelosi Fact-File

Essential biographical information on the House Minority Leader. Fact-Files is a series in History Moments that gives historical information on people in the news. Non-partisan, non-sectarian, just the facts. http://dld.bz/fZ6rX

Thursday, August 10, 2017

I Will Teach Big History Class

From the Big Bang to the Final Blackout.  Looking forward to prehistory topics like dinosaurs.  Then early civilizations, Europe’s outsized influence on world civilization, and the Industrial Revolution.  People good and bad like Caesar, Napoleon, and Trump.


Then today’s major powers face the future.  Last future history – a contradiction in words?

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Comenius Modernizes Education

John Amos Comenius (1592-1671) is now generally recognized as the founder of modern education.

The chief work of Comenius, the Didactica Magna, was probably      finished about 1638, and was shown in manuscript to many persons at that time. Its ideas as to education were widely accepted, and its influence and that of its author spread rapidly over much of Europe.

It is in the department of method, however, that we recognize the chief contribution of Comenius to education. The mere attempt to systematize was a great advance. In seeking, however, for foundations on which to erect a coherent system, he had had to content himself with first principles which were vague and unscientific.


Read more:  http://dld.bz/fYY3h

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

My Favorite Social Media History

These are my go-to places.  What are yours?

Google Communities – History http://dld.bz/dTFsN
Google Collections – History Moments * http://dld.bz/fYSUT
Linked In Groups – History Enthusiasts http://dld.bz/fYSWD and Practical History http://dld.bz/fYSWV
Facebook Groups – History Group * http://dld.bz/d7uzu and  World History http://dld.bz/fYSXk
Pininterest Boards - History http://dld.bz/fYTbk
Tumblr Blogs – Ancient History Encyclopedia http://dld.bz/fYTd7
Twitter - @jacklemoine *


* I moderate this.

Monday, August 7, 2017

British History Landing Page

This has highlights of the history of Great Britain and the British Empire.  Passages from the works of some of the greatest historians about the most important events are presented. 

Some of the writers selected are Edward Creasy, Sir Walter Scott, are Kate Norgate.

Some of the events selected are Joan of Arc’s Trial and Execution, How the House of Commons Began, and The Boer War.


Sunday, August 6, 2017

First Battles of the Hundred Years War

Sluys in 1340 was the first major victory of the English Navy.  Then came the spectacular Battle of Crecy in 1346 which established the dominance of the English longbowman over the French knight.  Later in the war the French would employ combined arms tactics to neutralize the longbow.  History Moment’s series is from Froissart’s Chronicles.    http://dld.bz/fYynY

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Mexican Revolution Video

This is a great documentary on the revolutionary struggles in Mexico in the early decades of the 20th. Century. It gives the historical background of these struggles in the late 19th. century. Lots of contemporary footage of Mexican figures and events.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Paul Ryan Fact-File

Essential biographical information on the Speaker of the House.  Fact-Files is a series in History Moments that gives historical information on people in the news.  Non-partisan, non-sectarian, just the facts.  http://dld.bz/fYrHy

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

What If the Confederacy Had Won the Civil War?


HBO and the creators of The Game of Thrones TV series are under attack because they are planning to produce a series on this.  An essay in The Washington Post summarizes the case against this.  Here’s a link to it:  http://dld.bz/fXR47

I do not understand the uproar.  Amazon has a highly rated and critically acclaimed series on what if the Axis powers had won World War II.  The TV series is called “The Man in the High Tower.”  In it, Hitler was still alive and had some scenes in the show.  Moreover, this series has been on since 2015. 


While the Confederates were evil (slavery), weren’t the Nazis at least as bad?  Why does one series get condemned and the other acclaimed?  I don’t understand.

Columbus Discovers America

In his own words.  And from the book written by his son Ferdinand.  Amid all of the controversies about his actions, what was his side of the story?

“Now in the meantime I had learned from certain Indians, whom I had seized there, that this country was indeed an island, and therefore I proceeded toward the east, keeping all the time near the coast, for three hundred twenty-two miles, to the extreme ends of this island.”

Read from a letter he wrote when he got back to Spain:  http://dld.bz/fXG7w


History Moments recently concluded a series on this.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Peace Between French Canada and Iroquois

It is 1645 and the French outposts at Quebec, Montreal, and Three Rivers have been throttled by the Iroquois Confederacy.  The French Allies, the Hurons, have been decimated. 

Now a conference at Three Rivers agrees on peace.  But will it last?

Francis Parkman takes up the story  http://dld.bz/fXCk8

From his book “The Jesuits in North America in the Seventeenth Century”.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Who Walked on Water?

“If one morning I walked across the Potomac River, the headline that afternoon would read: ‘President Can’t Swim.’”


– Lyndon B. Johnson

Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Day, 2017

A battle we should not forget. Year: 1862.  Place:  Frankfurt, Kentucky.

Confederates capture Kentucky capital, Frankfurt.  Install Confederate Governor and state government.  Lengthy Inaugural Address.  Hearing cannon fire in distance.  Union army approaching.  Inaugural ball postponed.


Battle of Perryville.