Wednesday, January 18, 2017

History: The Year is 1933

I've uploaded year 1933 to the TSP Wiki...

Here are some one liners...

A Roosevelt Utopia -- I talk about the New Deal communities and how they failed. They seem relevant to the podcast subject matter.

The Nazis Are On Fire! -- Hitler consolidates power and FDR makes the wrong move appointing Dodd as Ambassador.

Notable Births -- Louis Farrakhan, Gene Kranz, Ann Richards, Dianne Feinstein, Willie Nelson, Gene Wilder, Caroll Spinney, Joan Rivers, and Michael Caine.

In Other News -- Prohibition is REPEALED, and Inauguration Day is changed,  King Kong is released, FM radio is patented, a United Airlines flight blows up and Ukrainians are dying by the millions.

A Roosevelt Utopia

People are struggling to survive through this Great Depression. Coal miners of West Virginia have been pooling their resources and working farms to feed their families. This is a great idea, but private people cannot be successful without government support. (I think it is a rule or something.) When First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt hears of this community effort she turns it into her pet project to build a government Utopia in West Virginia. Thus Arthurdale is first conceived. Several hundred homes are built and families interviewed to join the community. Singles and immigrants need not apply and while we are at it... no blacks or Jews either. Finally, no private sector employment is allowed except as it relates to producing products for government consumption. It is the perfect little world... except that the Republicans are calling it a commie stronghold. (Those Republicans spoil everything!) Government funding dries up despite the First Lady's pleas to Congress. The community should have been self-sustaining without continuing government help, but the residents seem unable to grow enough food. Businesses attempt to establish themselves in Arthurdale, but they don't stay long. Within a few years it is clear that these "New Deal" communities have failed. [1] [2]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Eleanor Roosevelt was not the only one who believed that government was required to make an ideal society work. IT'S SCIENCE! Similar experiments were attempted all around the world, but I have only seen it work in Israel. The key is to keep the number of adult participants low... from 200 to 400 and the participants nationwide under 3%. Any more than that and you get too many loafers scamming the system. Socialism remains popular because people think that it should work if everyone participates, but the socialist model barely works for monasteries. Experience has proven that it does not scale up. There is no economy of size because there is no reason to produce more than you must, just to get by. Despite what anyone says, socialism is a "one-is-enough" philosophy rather than the more sensible "two-is-one and one-is-none". [3] [4]

The Nazis Are On Fire!

Germany needs a firm hand, so Adolf Hitler is appointed Chancellor, and just in time. Weeks later a Dutch communist sets fire to the parliament building (in German: Reichstag). Obviously the communists are out of control! (Well... yes. They are out of control, but this seems too convenient for the Nazis.) Hitler is granted sweeping powers, thus nullifying civil rights and lifting the restrictions on police action. An American physician practicing in Berlin is rumored to be an enemy of the state. His house is searched and he is taken away. They strip him and beat him until his flesh is raw and bleeding. He finally comes to the US Embassy for help. Subordinates have been sending warnings to the State Department about the growing violence, but where is the Ambassador? FDR cannot find anyone to take the position. He finally settles on William Dodd, a college professor and Woodrow Wilson fanboy. This is odd because ambassadors are usually rich people who are expected to foot the bill for state dinners, fancy dishes and a limousine. But Dodd is a professor! Not a playboy. Yet, what choice does FDR have? The German people will soon realize that Hitler is a kook. No need to panic, eh? Dodd can cover it for now, but actually no. He can't. This is a fatal error. [5] [6] [7]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Apparently no one at the State Department was reading the reports their embassy was sending them. What made Dodd influential in Germany was not his personal charm. It was his daughter. Martha was a young divorcee, looking for love and found it in the Nazi leadership. The red flags flying and cool uniforms made it seem that she could do anything, and she did do just about anything she wanted. She became the mistress of the chief of the Gestapo. Rudolf Diels was his name. At the time the Gestapo was running concentration camps for political prisoners. Martha also took up with a KGB agent. Even Hitler made a pass at her. She was smack dab in the middle of it all. And she kept a detailed diary of her adventures which is how we know of her today. I don't particularly like Martha, but she was not unusual. The comments I make regarding what the young people thought at the time, come through her. A suggest reading, "In the Garden of Beasts" by Erik Larson. Remember that people of the time didn't know what came next. They hoped that it would all come out OK. You know. Like it always has in the past. This was normalcy bias on steroids. [8]

Notable Births

  • Louis Farrakhan (Living): Controversial leader of the Nation of Islam. [9]
  • Gene Kranz (Living): NASA Flight Director who NEVER said, "Failure is not an option," but embraced it after the movie "Apollo 13" came out. [10]
  • Ann Richards: Governor of Texas and a major force in the Democrat Party. [11]
  • Dianne Feinstein (Living): US Senator from Calif. and former mayor of San Francisco. [12]
  • And in Entertainment...
  • -- Willie Nelson (Living): Entertainer best known for "On the Road Again", "To All the Girls I've Loved Before", and for smoking weed. [13]
  • -- Gene Wilder: Best known for "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory", "Young Frankenstein", and "Blazing Saddles". [14]
  • -- Caroll Spinney (Living): He plays Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on Sesame Street. [15]
  • -- Joan Rivers: Standup comedian, talk show host and reality TV star. She did it all. [16]
  • -- Michael Caine (Living): I loved him in Miss Congeniality. He favored communism until he served in the Korean War and saw how the communists treated their citizens. [17]
**Note: (Living) means they were alive when I checked.

In Other News

  • Prohibition is REPEALED, and Inauguration Day is changed to January 20th. [18] [19]
  • King Kong is released!. Faye Wray is the first in a long line of ladies to scream their way to fame. [20]
  • FM radio is patented. Norway will shutdown FM radio in 2017 in favor of digital audio. (It is easier to track you that way.) [21] [22]
  • A United Airlines flight blows up. A bomb goes off in the toilet causing the tail section to separate. The bomber was never identified. [23]
  • The life expectancy of a Ukrainian is now 7.3 years. The Holodomor is a man-made famine created by Stalin that kills off millions of Ukrainians. There are no exact numbers. Say 10 million. Welcome to socialism. [24]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1933, Wikipedia.

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