03 October 2011

Monday Musings...
You can tell that Fall is in the air at last.
Got a "briskness" to it that tends to wake one up straight away.
Leaves are just beginning to turn on certain trees...it's all looking good.
Puts a spring in your step, that's for sure.
So, top off your beverage of choice, sit back and take it easy here for a spell.
*** First up today, there was NO CRIME in our city (Ft. Wayne), at least that's what the PAPER said this morning.
(and we all know how comprehensive AND truthful they can be)
Yeah, well the police radio had a different take...
Seems with the advent of the new month, and freshly cut checks from the taxpayers along with "refills" for specific debit cards, we've got another crop of idiocy rampant in town...at least certain parts of town.
I heard one call that happened at Southgate (Krogers) on Saturday afternoon.
One would-be thief managed to run from the grocery store as soon as he was spotted by a FWPD officer.
The officer gave chase (on foot), and caught up with the perp soon enough, where he discovered that "Mr Lightfingers" had several packages of STEAKS on his person. All in all, a nice collar.
What amazes me is how those steaks jumped into the clothing OF that black male...all by themselves.
Musta had some help, there...no doubt.
Five-finger "discounts" don't cut it when you're too lazy to get a damn job, and instead shack up with some welfare queen in the hope of "furthering your career"...not in this day and age.
Time for that buck to start learning what it really means to BE A MAN.
But, since we all know that crime NEVER takes a day off, we also had some assorted "domestics" all over this part of town.
Most ALL of them were concerning "boyfriends" that lived with the C.P.
Didn't hear tell of ANY "husband"...(just "sperm-donors").
And it never ceases to amaze me HOW they can all afford such newer vehicles...like some dealership was giving them away or something.
(well, they are "entitled"...right?)
Sure, they're entitled, definitely...to the EXACT SAME OPPORTUNITY the rest of us have in life...no more, no less.
What they decide to DO with such opportunity depends NOT on the rest of us...or the government, but how they THEMSELVES choose to handle it..
Puts a whole new slant on the word SQUANDER...!
Actually, it's more like pissing it all up against the wall, which is what many of them ACTUALLY do whenever the mood (and a booze-filled bladder) strikes them...we used to call that indecent behavior...and maybe indecent exposure.
And it's here that we segue into the next facet of today's post...
* * * * *
((caution: you might learn something))
Last evening, I got to watch the first installment of the latest film from KEN BURNS...called PROHIBITION.
And, much like ALL of his films, it's an outstanding piece of work.
Ever since he came on the scene, I made it a point to NEVER miss any of his films, because they ALL taught me things about our nation that textbooks and library visits only hinted at.
Burns has a knack for providing so much more on whatever topic he pursues, be it Jazz, or baseball, or the Civil War.
He can cut through the crap, and provide the viewer with facts, faces, and names...people we never knew that much about (if anything), and pivotal points in the American Story. Like pieces of a puzzle that have been marvelously assembled to demonstrate what the "big picture" would look like...that's what Ken Burns does for me, anyway.
I never get the feeling that his films are "talking" AT ME, but rather TO ME, and that's the sign of a great filmmaker.
*** The whole prohibition deal was one born out a sense of temperance, and it was America's first foray into attempting to legislate bad behavior.
Basically, it failed...and pretty damn well, too.
Here's the WIKI on the subject:
Oddly enough, before prohibition, close to SEVENTY PERCENT of the entire nation's revenue came (in some manner) from the production and sale of beer, wine and spirits...that's a fair amount of spending money, folks.
But since it was not the conservatives who were behind prohibition, but actually the PROGRESSIVES, the 18th Amendment passed.
The Volstead Act was in full swing.
One of the (very) FEW things that Woodrow Wilson did (right) was to attempt to VETO the bill, but Congress passed it nonetheless.
After all, the government already had the 16th Amendment rattifying an federal INCOME TAX. (which took a 15% DROP during prohibition)
Now, we had a ban on the production, sales, and transport of alcoholic beverages...BUT there was no (federal) enforcement to back it the hell up.
Initially, the entire prohibition movement (fostered by the WCTU) was to rid households of "demon spirits" that tended to tear families apart, produce alcoholic and violent behavior, and the like. Thus the ASL (anti-saloon league) was formed.
The temperance movement was about closing down ALL the saloons that made a recently paid worker broke by evening's end, and forcing the woman of the house to wonder how she was going to pay bills and feed the family.
Beer was seen as "liquid bread", and therefore claiming exemption from the ban...
And since all the major beer manufacturers were of German lineage (and immigrants) they banded together to save the breweries.
More can be found at THIS PBS link:
Sad to say you couldn't have ONE beverage allowed with others banned...so it was "all or nothing at all", as the song goes.
And then there was this nasty FIRST WORLD WAR that turned American sentiment for Germans (here) 180 degress.
Interestingly enough, when alcohol was banned, the government REVENUES dried up AS FAST as the nation itself...!
And how was our government going to fill that wonderfully HUGE "budget-shortfall"?
By creating a "permanent" federal INCOME TAX...(and we all know how well that went over).
Again, it was PROGRESSIVES that called for this, too (so as to better redistribute the wealth).
If you watched last night's first installment, they said as much...plain as day.
If you need some back story of America's progressivism, here's a WIKI for you:
Noble intentions...but flawed in practice in MANY ways, although some real progress was made regarding working conditions, child labor laws, and the like. it started out well enough, but grew too many tentacles that reached into too many pockets way too quickly.
The "Noble Experiment"...that's what PROHIBITION was called.
And it failed, as you can see by watching the next two episodes tonight and Tuesday night.
I have to say again, that I learn more in under two hours than I ever could by sticking my nose in every book on the subject.
The research that Burns (and Lynn Novick) did for this film must have been exhaustive, to say the least.
I always thought that Carrie Nation had a lot LARGER part in all this than was portrayed in the film.
She was (like the WCTU) a "flash in the pan", but she was FEISTY and STEADFAST, if nothing else.
Eventually, she took her cause to the VAUDEVILLE stage, and became a subject of ridicule.
But she always had her hatchet at the ready, to bust up a saloon...talk about spunk!
So, if you've got about 2 hours you're not doing anything with for the next two days, give Burns' film a look-see.
I promise you'll discover things about this nation you never knew.
*** Lastly today...through this film, we see the attempt to legislate BEHAVIOR in America...an attempt that met with initial resistance, and eventual failure on a grand scale.
We saw the rise of crime as a result of such an attempt, with dubious yet lucrative people making millions at the expense of others.
We saw our nation divide itself once again, but this time, it was the WETS versus the DRYS.
You cannot have any government "dictate" what type of behavior it's people need to pursue...but you can enact GOOD laws that stem the tide of those who chase after that behavior, and you always have to go after the source of the problem, and not the symptoms.
Much as I would like to see people behave THEMSELVES and act in a CIVIL manner, I realize that as long as their bad behavior is condoned, and basically rewarded (through progressive programs), not much will change, and we will see even more people falling into step. Or maybe not. People are waking up.
People have to be lawful UNTO THEMSELVES first and foremost.
They have to learn about the CHOICES they make in life.
And they also have to be aware of the CONSEQUENCES of making the wrong choice, which impact on others, as a result.
That's why we have the laws we do...and they SHOULD all be enforceable enough to keep folks on that straight and narrow.
Sure we can live with alcohol...as long as people REALIZE the down side to it.
When YOU lose control of YOUR life (through whatever means), you don't have such realizations.
Doesn't matter if you're into booze, drugs, sexual perversions, theft, or place the "almighty dollar" above everything else.
What DOES matter is that YOU keep control of your life, because you're gonna be spending MORE time in it than anyone else.
So why not make it the best life you can, as often as you can.
Now that's something to think upon.
Have yourselves a great week.
Be well, make a difference to someone, and...
Stay safe out there, America.


ms nk rey said...

Just once I would like to see someone take responsibility for their own actions. We have turned into a "not my fault" country. From the shoplifter to the drug addict ( Michael Jackson ) it seems nothing is their fault. Sad very sad. Keep up the good work Bobby G.

Bob G. said...

Things sure have changed since we were young'uns, right?

It was always in our best interest (and continued ability to NOT eat dinner standing up for a week) to CLAIM fault and take blame where it existed in our young lives.

And woe to us when we LIED to our folks...that just added a few more logs on THAT fire, hmm?

Better to "fess up" be done with it, and MOVE ON...
Like to see that come back in vogue for a lot more folks out there, wouldn't you?

Hey, thanks for taking time out to drop on by today.
Much appreciated.

Stay safe down there.
(and stop feeding those geese...lol)

CWMartin said...

Did you hear that during prohibition, beer consumption actually went up to a peak that has not been matched since? I'll be checking out that link here in a minute to see when next its on.

Bob G. said...

It wasn't just BEER consumption that rose during Prohibition, my friend...
We drank a lot more of every alcoholic beverage with fewer people than we do today.'

And then there were those that purchased more than they could use and stockpiled...lol.

Thanks for stopping by and commenting.
You stay safe up there.