Wednesday, January 13, 2016

History: The Year is 1708

I've uploaded year 1708 to the TSP Wiki...

Here are some one liners...

The Last Veto of the English Monarchy... Sort of -- Queen Anne is afraid that the Scots might rebel so she vetoes the military part of the bill that unifies Scotland and England. I talk about the Declaration of Independence and the problem with a King that vetoes laws from a distance.

Teaching Hospitals and Teaching Students -- A Dutch botanist with a tough last name publishes on inflammation. He also establishes the idea of teaching hospitals. I talk about teaching and common core.

Europe Produces Its Own Hard Porcelain -- Dresden has come up with a process to produce Chinese porcelain. I talk about the difference between ceramic and porcelain.

The Last Veto of the English Monarchy... Sort of

Queen Anne refuses to go whole hog on the unification of Scotland and England, now called Great Britain. Unifying the Parliaments at Westminster is working, but they are still working out the military unification. A last minute rumor of a French force sailing for Scotland has spooked the Queen's advisors. She is a reasonably popular Queen but not exactly a strong Queen. She takes the council of her fears and exercises the right of a constitutional monarch to deny royal assent. In other words, she vetoes the Scottish Militia Bill and the majority of Parliament breathes a sigh of relief... except for a few Scots who now know they are not trusted... not really. In the years to come the monarchy will use various tactics to divert Parliament from passing disagreeable laws, but this is the last time a denial of royal assent will be used in Great Britain. The British colonies are a different matter. [1] [2] [3] [4]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
The Declaration of Independence lists the grievances against King George the 3rd. The first complaint is that the King was vetoing good laws, but more significantly, the King would not allow laws to take effect until he approved them. Given the months that it took for communication to pass across the Atlantic and the likelihood that a ship might sink or be interdicted by pirates, royal approval could take a year of back-and-forth. But as you read down the list, it is clear that the King wanted to collapse the system. He was not ruling the colonies. He was destroying them. Here is a list of the relevant complaints... [5]
* He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
* He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
* He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
* He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures. [6]

Teaching Hospitals and Teaching Students

A Dutch botanist (Herman B.) has published his theory on the how inflammation works. His motto, "Simplicity is the sign of truth," is a variation on Occam's Razor: the simplest explanation is usually the correct one. Herman introduces the idea of teaching hospitals where doctors are taught by doing. This is also the year when Albrecht von Haller is born. He will become one of Herman's students and he will be considered the father of modern physiology which is the study of the function of organisms. Later, Herman's ideas on heat transfer will be used by Benjamin Franklin to invent his Franklin Stove. [7] [8] [9] [10] [11]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Although Herman did significant work, he had a real talent for teaching students and his students expanded on those ideas and methods. Education today is quite complex. Students are loaded down with facts but rarely know how to judge the value of those facts. This is partly due to the German educational system we use, but in the early 1920s, educators began to obscure learning, masking it with dense lingo and complex methods. This prevents individuals from teaching themselves and (apparently) creates full employment for professional teachers. After all... if your average mother could teach a child, what would you have? You would have a lot of mothers educating their children instead of being shut out by Common Core crap. (FYI, "crap" is not a profanity. It is derived from the name "Thomas Crapper" who sold plumbing fixtures. You can figure out the rest from there.) [12]

Europe Produces Its Own Hard Porcelain

Dresden has done it! Chinese porcelain is really expensive, since it must be shipped thousands of miles from China to Europe. Until this time, Europe could only produce a soft-paste porcelain, which is porous and easily broken. They have finally found a method of producing hard-paste porcelain in Dresden, Saxony which is a province of modern day Germany. The formula is made from two types of feldspar (a crystallized lava rock) and a mineralized clay, all mixed into a compound and fired extremely hot. The main advantage is that there is less breakage when porcelain is exposed to a hot liquid. [13] [14] [15]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Well... what is the difference between ceramic and porcelain and bone china? The answer is... not a lot in terms of ingredients but there is a difference in the way they are fired. Porcelain is a type of ceramic and after it is fired, a test is made to determine the porousness of the material. The material is weighed. Then it is boiled in water for 5 hours and then submerged under water for 24 hours. When it is pulled out, if the weight has increased less than 0.5% it is called porcelain. Porcelain is usually made out of a slightly different mix of materials than general ceramic but it all comes down to density and how much water the material absorbs. Bone china is a soft-paste porcelain. It is not fired as hot so it is less dense and one has a wider range of decorative options with it than hard-paste porcelain. [16]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1708, Wikipedia.

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