Monday, April 3, 2017

History: The Year is 1975

I've uploaded year 1975 to the TSP Wiki...

As always, Alex Shrugged's opinions are his own. Other people's work are their own. I include them here for the sake of completeness and to provide a second method of access to the material for the TSP history segment.

* Release of Monty Python and the Holy Grail -- Contributed by Andy "CandyGram4Mongo"

* American Amnesia: How the Democrats forgot that they Murdered more than 2 Million People -- Contributed by Alex Shrugged

* Stockholm Embassy Attack -- Contributed by Southpaw Ben

* The First Successful "Hobby Computer" and the Birth of Microsoft -- Contributed by Alex Shrugged

* Notable Births -- See below.

* This Year in Film -- See below.

* This Year in Music -- See below.

* In Other News -- See below.


Release of Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Contributed by Andy "CandyGram4Mongo"
Monty Python and the Holy Grail is a parody of the King Arthur mythology that has been continuously quoted since its release, particularly by Information Technology professionals born in the late 1950's and early 1960s.
Notable quotes include:
  • "It's just a flesh wound"
  • "I'm not dead yet"
  • "What's your favorite color?"
  • "One, two, five [THREE SIR], three"
Monty Python and the Holy Grail did to the Medieval Film Genre what Blazing Saddles and Young Frankenstein had done to Westerns and Fright flicks the previous year - it incorporated common themes recognizable by all and lampooned perfectly by the Monty Python team.
For preppers whose plan includes "Comfort Food", board games, and other tools to help everyone maintain an even keel when SHTF, this is another title that may be worth having available to break the tension.

American Amnesia: How the Democrats forgot that they Murdered more than 2 Million People

Contributed by Alex Shrugged
The Vietnam War is over. The Paris Peace Accords are signed, but as the USA supplies South Vietnamese troops with arms as per the agreement, the Soviet Union supplies the North at a ratio of 4 to 1. The Democrat Congress tries to reduce the promised aid. Then President Nixon resigns 3 months before the mid-term elections. President Gerald Ford's subsequent pardon of Nixon renders the Republicans politically dead. The Democrats come in with veto-proof majorities. The Pentagon Papers had embarrassed the Democrats, so in turn, Nixon's victory in Vietnam had to tarnished. With malice and forethought, the Democrat Congress forced Cambodia and South Vietnam into defeat by cutting off the funding promised in the Peace Accords. President Ford begged the Democrats to keep the US promise. Now Saigon has fallen. Over the next few years, 2 million Vietnamese will take to their boats to escape. More than half will die before they reach refuge. At least 1.7 million Cambodians will be marched into the Killing Fields to be hacked to death by the Maoist Khmer Rouge. It didn't have to happen. All we had to do was keep our promises. Now no one will trust us... and they shouldn't. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
The Democrats certainly are forgetful people. They have forgotten that they rounded up the Japanese and placed them in concentration camps. Forgotten that they dropped two atomic bombs on Japanese cities. Forgotten how they turned hoses on Black demonstrators, blocked the Civil Rights Acts and killed American soldiers in Vietnam by trying to run the war by remote control. What was one more case of amnesia? It was just a few million deaths. This was one of the turning points in my life. I knew it was happening, but I could do nothing about it. I wanted to be a good Democrat. I really did, but I was too ashamed. I cannot stand with a political party that would murder millions to cover their own worthless backsides. I would rather die than call myself a Democrat ever again. F THEM! F EVERY LAST ONE OF THEM! They did it, and they'd do it again! I cry every time I think of it. After all these years, it still hurts that much. [9] [10]

Stockholm Embassy Attack

Contributed by Southpaw Ben
On April 24th, 6 members of the RAF took over the West German embassy in Stockholm, Sweden. The Red Army Faction was a far-left West German terrorist group, and their attack in retaliation for the death of one their fellow members, Holger Meins, who had starved to death during a hunger strike in the Wittlich Prison. They called themselves the "Holger Meins Commandos" in reference to his death. They stormed the embassy and took 13 hostages, including the ambassador. When the Swedish police didn't back off when requested to, the RAF took a German military attaché to a landing on the upper floor they were occupying and shot him. After this, when the police prepared to storm the building, the embassy was rocked by an explosion, which resulted in all of the hostages suffering severe burns. Two of the terrorists died, one from a grenade he dropped, and the other a few days after the attack from his burns. [11][12]
My Take by Southpaw Ben
This is not the Stockholm attack that resulted in the name "Stockholm Syndrome". That was a bank robbery that took place in 1973.

The First Successful "Hobby Computer" and the Birth of Microsoft

Contributed by Alex Shrugged
In the January issue of Popular Electronics, the cover features the new Altair 8800, a "mini-computer" based on the Intel 8080 microprocessor. It sells for $498 fully assembled. (That is over $2100 in 2015.) It is essentially a metal box with a front panel filled with lights and toggle switches. To "boot" the machine you must enter a jump command in binary code... that is... ones and zeros. The company expects to sell 200 of the things. Hopefully a little more. Instead they receive thousands of orders from eager hobbyists. Among them are Bill Gates and Paul Allen. They see an opportunity and offer to demo their "BASIC" interpreter that runs on the Altair. Imagine that! The only problem is... Bill and Paul are frickin' dreamin'. They don't have a BASIC interpreter for the Altair. Normal people would call this LYING, but in the computer industry this is known as "common business practice." Paul has a BASIC interpreter he can adapt on the fly, so while he is actually flying, he is still working on it. When he gets there, it boots the first time. Success! Microsoft is born. [13] [14] [15]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
In those days software was distributed via paper tape (a sort of continuous punch card) or by cassette. It was a tedious process to load a program into memory. I know. I had to do it. The Altair had the advantage of being expandable. The S-100 bus allowed a hobbyist to create his own expansion card, or to install extra memory, or various accessories like an 8 inch floppy disk drive or maybe even a keyboard. (GASP!) Today an expansion bus is seen as that slot that you stick your video card into, but back then, the S-100 bus could be used for almost anything. That was its virtue, and its problem. It depended on how one interpreted the specifications. Eventually Apple Computer solved the problem by making their computers a closed box. What you see is what you get. No fooling around inside. For the rest of the Universe, the quest for the perfect expansion bus continues, although the need for one has lessened. Most of the functions that consumers require are already designed into the motherboard. The only real choices left are the video and sound cards. So I suppose, Apple had it right all along. [16] [17]

Notable Births

Note: This list will be getting smaller as we move forward in time.
  • Heather O'Rourke (died 1988, age 12): She was the little girl in Poltergeist that delivered the famous line, "They're here." She died from a misdiagnosis of a small-bowel obstruction that led to heart failure while in surgery.
  • -- In Movies: Kate Winslet, Angelina Jolie, Charlize Theron and Drew Barrymore. [18]
  • -- In TV: Eva Longoria (Desperate Housewives). [18]
  • -- In Music: Michael BublĂ© and 50 Cent. [18]
  • -- In Sports: Ray Lewis, Alex "A-Rod" Rodriguez and Tiger Woods. [18]

This Year in Film

  • Jaws: (I'll never go in the water again--alexshrugged). [19]
  • One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest: Nurse Ratchet! (This is why mental institutions were emptied out.--alexshrugged ). [19]
  • The Rocky Horror Picture Show: (This is why mental institutions should be filled up again.--alexshrugged). [19]
  • Monty Python and the Holy Grail: An irreverent look at King Arthur seeking the Holy Grail. (I felt compelled to buy a shrubbery!--alexshrugged) [19]
  • And death to them all with... Death Race 2000, The Stepford Wives, and Rollerball (From the excellent short story, "Roller Ball Murder". The movie is less excellent.--alexshrugged) [19] [20]

This Year in TV

  • Saturday Night Live: First guest host: George Carlin! [21]
  • ABC's Good Morning America!: Easy-going news to start your day (because they can't compete with the real news offered on the NBC's Today Show). [21]
  • -- In Situation Comedy: Barney Miller, The Jeffersons and Welcome Back, Kotter (featuring John Travolta). [21]
  • -- In Game Shows: Wheel of Fortune with Chuck Wollery. Pat Sajak will replace him in 6 years. [21]
  • -- In Crime Shows: S.W.A.T., and Baretta. [21]

This Year in Music

  • I'm Not In Love: 10cc. (FYI, he really is in love.--alexshrugged) [22]
  • Rhinestone Cowboy: Glen Campbell. [22]
  • Una Paloma Blanca: The George Baker Selection. (I prefer Slim Whitman's yodeling version. Makes me laugh.--alexshrugged) [22]
  • Space Oddity: David Bowie. "This is ground control to Major Tom!" [22]
  • Bohemian Rhapsody: Queen. (It's my favorite from the band.--alexshrugged) [22]

This Year in Video Games

  • Pong is now wireless!: The Japanese console transmits over UHF. [23]
  • Taito releases the first gunfighter game: "Western Gun" is also the 1st game to use a microprocessor. (It's the Intel 8080 running at a screaming 1.9968 Mega Hertz.) [23]
  • The first interactive fiction game is created: Colossal Cave Adventure is text-based. Think of The Princess Bride and the video game the grandson was playing. [23]

In Other News

  • The Pet Rock is Born: It doesn't need to be fed. It won't die. It is the perfect pet. 1 million are sold during the Christmas season at $4 a piece or about $17 in 2015 (I bought one.--alexshrugged) [24] [25]
  • President Gerald Ford survives 2 assassination attempts: One by Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme (a Charles Manson follower) and another by Sara Jane Moore (an FBI informant). [26]
  • New York City gets a federal bailout: It's a swing loan of 2.3 billion, repaid each year for the next 4 years. (They had been cooking the books, and then they were too big to fail.--alexshrugged) [26]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1975, Wikipedia.

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