Monday, July 4, 2016

History: The Year is 1820

I've uploaded year 1820 to the TSP Wiki...

Here are some one liners...

Liberia Means Liberty -- The first ship takes free Negroes to their new home, Liberia. It's not going to solve the slave problem in America though.

The Missouri Compromise Means Slavery -- To keep the balance of power, Maine is a free state and Missouri is a slave state. Congress has kicked the can down the road to the American Civil War. (I talk about Social Security in terms of the slavery problem.)

Joseph Smith's First Vision -- He sees angels, and the Church of Latter-day Saints has its beginnings here. I talk about visions and messages from God. Yes. I believe in them.

In Other News -- Antarctica, Venus de Milo and low-priced government land!

Update (July 5, 2016): Added Joseph Smith's First Vision.

Liberia Means Liberty

The newly renamed ship, Mayflower of Liberia, sets off with 86 former slaves in order to establish a new nation in Africa. The word "Liberia" means "Land of Freedom". For several years now a group of abolitionists and slave-owners have joined together to solve the problem of the free negro. He is free from slavery but not really part of society. Slave-owners, such as Congressman Henry Clay, worry that the free negro will become a source of disruption and will encourage slaves to run away. That is why the American Colonization Society was established to find a place for the free negro settle, and make a life for himself... far, far away from American slaves. A plot of land was leased last year, south of the British colony of Sierra Leone, in West Africa. They call it Liberia. It's capital will be called Monrovia, named after President James Monroe, the current President of the United States of America who has won reelection in a landslide. (He ran unopposed, but one elector voted for John Quincy Adams anyway.) By next year the Afro-American settlers will buy Liberia from the natives. [1] [2]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Liberia sounds like a good idea, but it was not practical. We are talking about 150 free Negros or more a year settling in Liberia. They could not make a dent in the slave population compared to the number of Negro children born into slavery each year. So Liberia was more like a feel-good, symbolic action for slave-owners like Henry Clay. Somehow he didn't see slavery as a major ordeal. In his home state of Kentucky, slaves mostly worked side-by-side with their masters. Clay's notion that slavery would gradually fade away and any Negros leftover would be sent to Liberia seems naive in retrospect. Thomas Jefferson once vigorously pursued Virginia's transition to a free economy, but he gave up on that idea once he became President. Why? It is clear that he could not manage such a transition on his own plantation. I am guessing that he realized that any rate of transition large enough to overcome the slave birth rate would never be accepted by the slave-owners at that time. He left the problem to be solved by the next generation. FYI, I really don't know what to call African-Americans any more. I call them black or Negro because in my generation those were the acceptable terms. The term "colored" was falling out of fashion. My grandchild is black and she is so sick of the whole mess, she is calling herself white from now on. If some white woman from the NAACP can call herself black then my granddaughter can call herself white. Certainly, she is Jewish. [3]

The Missouri Compromise Means Slavery

After the Louisiana Purchase, Congress has been debating whether future states should be admitted as free or slave. The debate has come down to politics and economics. If both Maine and Missouri are accepted as free, the Northern industrial states will have a clear majority, and use their power to set excise taxes that will kill the South's agrarian economy. The Congress is in deadlock, so they agree to a compromise. Maine will be accepted into the Union as a free state this year and next year, Missouri will be accepted as a slave state. The Congress has kicked the can down the road, but this road leads to the American Civil War. It didn't start out as a civil war, but it became one fairly quickly. It started just like Britain voting to exit the European Union in June 2016. The British Exit vote or Brexit (BRECKS-it) could be called many things but not a civil war. Nevertheless, the European Union is debating whether to punish the UK or not. I doubt there will be a war, but there will be a lot of finger-pointing and name-calling in the future. [4] [5] [6] [7]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
OK. Why couldn't the Southern states transition to a wage-based economy? Slavery was so big that they did not have enough money to maintain a slave and paid-worker economy side-by-side as they transitioned. It meant financial ruin for a lot of slave owners and lot of elderly slaves who were counting on Social Security... oops!... I mean they were counting on their slave masters. Indeed, Social Security must fail at some point because there are not enough young people paying taxes to finance the retirement of their parents. The honest solution is to STOP collecting the taxes from their paychecks and tell them that the government is out of the retirement business. Yet, those near retirement do not have enough money to provide for an alternate solution. Like the old South's slave economy, we cannot afford to pay current Social Security recipients while NOT taxing younger workers. The solution seems simple. The government controls a lot of land. Give the elderly 40 acres and a mule, so to speak. They can live on the land or sell it and go on vacation. Whatever. Free the slaves before it is too late. [8] [9]

Joseph Smith's First Vision

Joseph Smith has seen angels. Smith is a 14-year-old farm boy, living near Manchester, New York. After recovering from a crippling bone disease, the young Smith has become interested in religion. The Second Great Awakening movement has been gaining momentum. It is a movement that emphasizes an emotional connection to the supernatural.. which is an academic way of saying that mysticism and folk magic are becoming popular again. Just note that Smith is delving into serious stuff and if he is not careful, he is going to get in over his head. He enters a grove of trees to ask God for guidance. (This is classic.) He sees a light and two angels appear before him. (He later identifies them as the Lord and Jesus.) The Lord tells young Smith that the churches of the day have drifted away from God's original path over the centuries. The Lord then forgives Smith for his sins. Joseph Smith tells others about his experience, but no one believes him. This First Vision is considered the beginning of Mormonism and the Church of the Latter-day Saints (LDS). The first church won't be organized until 1830. [10] [11] [12]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
I was going to skip Joseph Smith's vision because it is a difficult subject, but I changed my mind because so many preppers are members of the LDS Church. So... did the First Vision really happen? I assume so. I study mysticism and I have experienced visions, including messages from God. The messages are usually in response to a question I have. The responses usually boil down to: (1) "Alex, the answer is in the Bible," or (2) "Alex, you already know the answer." OK. Not too earth-shattering. Joseph Smith's observation was that most people were not entirely following what was written in the Bible. Anyone who studies the Bible closely notices that it is often difficult to figure out exactly what one is supposed to do. Honest disagreements are not only possible, but inevitable. My answer is that we should decide for ourselves what is best to do, and muddle along until the Messiah shows up or some super-authority tells us how this is all supposed to go... officially. I am comfortable believing that God has different revelations for different groups. Your mileage may vary.

In Other News

  • The US Land Act lowers the minimum price for public land. This encourages the settlement of the Northwest Territory. [4] [13]
  • Antarctica is discovered.... sort of. Several explorers claim to have spotted it. [14]
  • The statue Venus de Milo is discovered. It was buried in the ruins of the ancient city of Milos. [15] [4]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1820, Wikipedia.

No comments:

Post a Comment