Since Aug 23, 1999
From Foggy old London Town. Served my time without distinction on the Suez Canal. At Ferry Point, near Ismailia. National Service. British Army. Royal Signals. Served 1950-1951. An excursion of British troops to exercise in the Sinai desert took place in 1951. Though a very unlikely soldier myself, I would not have missed my months part in that Exercise Sand Grouse. I have followed in the steps of the Children of Israel.
Was interested in the Larry King interview with the late Johnny Cash. King asked Johnny what he did when in the Air Force. Johnny said "High Speed Intercept Operator". Johnny listened out on the Russians. After the army, I did much of that work as a radio operator (class II). This was in high speed commercial automatic morse transmissions. Trained at Bletchley Park. This was in the early 1950's, cold war stuff. The shift work nearly killed me, so I quit after two years.
A little more on myself. Married an English school teacher from West London. Met her at the Hammersmith Palais, London. Took three months leave of absence from Canada to find someone who would have me. Married now for fifty years plus. Two daughters, three grandchildren. Often look across the border, at the Land of the Free. Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. The St Mary's River flows softly. Coffee in hand in my Mini-Van.
If things get tough for me personally,regarding free speech, I just might swim for it.
Working class myself. Main hobby is Family History and ancestry research. Love books- good books. Through recomendations by various Freepers, I have purchased a goodly number of them. I doubt I would have heard of them otherwise. One mention every so often of some favourite books, including Freeper recomendations.
Florence Foster Jenkins.
Nicholas Martin and Jasper Rees.
St. Martin's Griffin.
The story of a very rich lady Florence Foster Jenkins (1868-1944). She thought she was an accomplished opera singer. Actual recordings of Florence find she does not really attain even an amateur's standards. Her money founded the "Verdi Club" where select persons would be treated royally while they watched Florence. They mostly appeared to applaud her.
A recent release of a film titled Florence Foster Jenkins, starred Meryl Streep (Florence) and Hugh Grant (St Clair Bayfield) and it followed the book quite closely. Some fine professional work by these two actors. The two photographic sections in the book, show the original studies of the real people. The second section from the film were of the film actors. This book is well worth a read and deals with the main character in a dignified fashion. The devotion of St Clair Bayfield who acted as her manager and accepted generally as her husband, is very memorable. The derision and jeers of her last audience at the Carnegie Hall in 1944, is painful to read. It is necessary however to record Florence's final end.
The Story of the Malakand Field Force
Delivery date December 7th. Only $11.99 paper back. Donated $5 to the children being taught to read fund, on my bill. Some superb insights here and as I read on, I bear in mind an old adage. This is that those who do not learn the lessons of past history, are doomed to repeat it's mistakes. The book deals with Afghanistan.
Simon & Shuster.
New York, NY. 2012.
I obtained this book 21st June 2012. To review it properly as an amateur, might be too much for me to do this book justice. I do not regret the purchase of the book however, indeed I have already been engrossed. One month later I am still plodding away. The search continues. I must add more, since I held forth on the David Maraniss accusation in the Washington Post elsewhere on Free Republic. He uses the word "haters" to describe those who seek to reveal the real Barack Obama. With respect to the man and the office of the presidency, few know who he really is. Maraniss has only scratched the surface. True, there is much information as to the general history of President Obama, but it is that which does not probe beyond what is already known. What I mean by this, is that much of the book, "Dreams From My Father" has provided David Maraniss with his story. What eludes many of us, is the inner person within the "official" man, but is valuable in giving clues.* There is a definite discomfort with a society generally administered to by whites. This does not augur well for a society where whites are still in a majority. This impression is not intended by the author, David Maraniss.
First of all to review the initial chapter titled "In Search Of El Dorado". Maraniss has an absolute master's touch in giving the reader a look back into the past. For it is in Kansas that the localities of Wichita, Augusta and El Dorado are deftly pictured. We are taken there to the heady days of the oil boom. Fleshed out by accounts of real human beings. Information is given as to the ancestry of the Dunham clan, the Paynes and the Armours. They come to life as one reads on. Then to the insatiable demands for aircraft workers and the mighty bombers used in WW2. Maraniss is a veritable Norman Rockwell in print.
Sadly, I must draw the conclusion that if the ideas that seem to predominate in the White House, no doubt supported by Maraniss, then that America is to be either destroyed or reduced to a shadow.
* I will concede I have been somewhat hasty with regard to the story of Barack Obama by David Maraniss. He does indeed explore many facets of the now President Obama. What I had failed to do was to pose the question. That question is this. Just how much of the young Barack Obama is carried within the President today? One can fear for the Republic, depending on the answer. (Election time 2012) The gentleman as leader of his nation, used the word revenge, in his appeal to his supporters. Not good.
Our local librarian has various books displayed in full view on entry. I saw:
The Last Boy.
New York City.
>Copyright 2010 by Jane Leavy.
And The End Of America's Childhood.
Another almost incredible biography. I look foward this account of the truimph and tragedy with the end of that era..... The cover belies the story within. It shows a smiling Mantle with his Yankee's cap. This is no happy go lucky account of living in Oklahoma and family life there. The grim reality of mine work and the awful polution endured by Mantle's father (dead at 40 years) prepares the reader. Mantle's medical problems at an early age will surely cause the reader to wince. At this stage, I will observe that the book is no sensational expose. Powerful stuff and shows the author's integrity in bringing "The Last Boy" to life. Perhaps it is not doing this book justice to jump forward to pages 205-209. Titled Part 3 Night Cap. Atlantic City April 1983. The print alters to catch the attention. Quote:
What I had seen of Mickey wasn't what I had expected or hoped.
Perhaps it describes the reactions of older readers who revel in that era. They may have certain expectations of a happy go lucky, "hit em' out of the park" account. This in reading a notable biography.
To digress. I pulled out my old well thumbed copy of Ken Sobol's "Babe Ruth" (1980). Had to compare this book. Good stuff, and Sobol lets Ruth down lightly, perhaps with justification..... Further reading properly though, might contradict my take on this. Dick Schaap, who writes the foreword, says written "without venom" in describing the book. Some of the women in the lives of the two baseball hard hitters were treated poorly. Neither man was a gentleman in this respect. I will leave it at that, for the time being.
David Leigh and Luke Harding.
New York. 2011.
Described as Julian Assange's War On Secrecy. In true form the Guardian uses leaked information to bash the United States military. One knows the Guardian of old in these matters. Further on, one of the authors holds forth, to whit. (page 202). " Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin,darling of the unhinged right....." There are claims Sarah "came close to inciting Assange's assassination" .
As the arrogance of the man Assange is very well detailed; there is some solid journalism here. Even the Guardian got fed up with his delusions of grandeur. Serious allegations are made against the US military in the treatment of Bradley Manning. What a dupe he was,he thought he duped others. What a price to pay for the swaggering likes of Assange. The press and it`s eager expose and conjecture boost sales and they walk free.
This book deserves more than a cursory view as I have presented. There is much information on the events leading up to the emergence of Assange. Throughout the book, I search carefully for any reasoning as to any tangible benefit, of what Assange or Manning achieved. The authors pleaded with Assange in one matter. This was to redact information on informants against Afghan terrorists. They feared identification of these informants. Assange said "So, if they get killed, thev've got it coming to them, they deserve it." (Page 111). The value of this publication is that the true face of Assange is shown. It is an attempt to give a picture of who this man is. Not easy to do.
As of late June 2012, we are informed of the flight of Assange to the embassy of Ecuador in London. It is believed his backers may have lost over 200,000 pounds in bail money.
I have lots of reading to do and will not index it at this time. Still plodding away at this fascinating work. Very readable, but has the aspects of much scholarly research. I may have a somewhat different view from many stalwart Freepers in one aspect. I blame the absolute cynical and anarchistic persons that may well have corrupted this once young man's mind. These more so, than the man himself. Still, needs a lot of solid reading on my part. There is a May 31st 2011 article by Jack Cashill, entered in American Thinker. More food for thought and dealing with the adulation of the President by an eminent educator. It may be me, but it is as if any reasoned evaluation has been lost. There is a sheer worship out there. Understandable with the general public, who get caught up in the emotion of hero worship, not with the intelligentsia. As I read on, I am aware of the immense damage to our western way of life that threatens. As a person, one on one, the President, has much to recomend him. As his driving force was of "change", I can only conclude sadly and regretfully about his inner beliefs. I think he will do worse for his country than the other charismatic change merchant. This being Pierre Trudeau who left his mark on Canada.
There follows much detail with comparisons from various researchers. This on the possibility that one, William Ayres, wrote much of the book, "Dreams From My Father". This with the collusion of the now president. The disturbing thing is that even if Ayres put it together, he must have followed much of what President Obama believes. It would take the most starry eyed follower to ignore the negative overtones. Now, it could be my take, but it seems that the writer invokes some guilt on persons who have the teremity to be white. A year after this (Cashill) book is published, comes the latest find. It is regarding a 1991 Acton- Dystel literary agent booklet, detailing upcoming authors. This publication, states a Kenyan born author Barack Obama, is a client. Jack Cashill was already right up there on the subject regarding the president's manoevering in his book. Dystel had been thrown under the bus according to the author. She was eventually dropped as an agent and lost a lucrative fee. She went to the wall to get a literary contract for Mr Obama. A lawyer was then employed in the matter of renumeration for the book. Mr Cashill is somewhat puzzled by Jane Dystel's absolute silence on her one time client.
A Singular Woman.
The Untold Story Of Barack Obama's Mother.
Member of Penguin Group (USA). New York, 2011.
I have always winced at some of the very unkind statements about what was once a headstrong young woman. For again,as was her son, she was exposed to various persons. Persons who had parlayed their screwed up philosophies into a career. Thus convincing vulnerable young people into a too early experiment with the "new morality" and the worship of multi-cultural superiority over her own Kansas upbringing .
I have yet to order it, but will do so tommorrow. Stanley Ann deserves a closer look and final conclusion as to who she was.(Saturday July 2nd). Coles of Canada/Chapters Indigo will have the book for me within five days..... I have it now. Whether one is supportive of Stanley Ann Dunham, or has decried her life style, the book is a must. The hitherto unpublished photographs alone, tell of the dedication of this talented author, Janny Scott. Hard to put the book down. I looked in vain for some clue as to Stanley Ann's confinement and actual comment about the finer details concerning the birth of her son. The author had interviewed some 200 people who knew Stanley Ann. Still we press on regardless. Reading between the lines, one can identify the "thinkers" and their philosophies, which likely influenced a very young woman. If what the author has observed is accurate, we can be sure of one thing. Stanley Ann Dunham did not have a deliberately unkind part within her inner nature. As of June 2012, I have been doing more reading of this book. I have to mention that as a young person, Stanley Ann could be very acerbic in her rebuttals during discussions. I believe she lost all of this attitude as she grew to maturity. A kindly, caring woman. Old fashioned rhetoric on my part, but sincere.
It is, of course a tribute to Stanley Ann by the author. I have no doubt the author is supportive of Stanley Ann's now famous son. I do not know how much support that is . Where the excellence in the book comes in, lies in the accounts within Stanley Ann's personal life. My opinion only, but Janny Scott does not seem to "gloss over" and excuse certain things. This regarding Stanley Ann's bad luck with her men. The meticulous account of Stanley Ann's illness and her eventual return to her native country is to be read carefully. It does not look well for the now President's account of her final days. Everything humanly possible was done for Stanley Ann to save her. This in the country she seemed to at times reject. Not much out there in the book world on the mothers of other famous men though. Churchill's mother -Jennie Jerome, was an American. Much more about this lady has been recently discovered . This book by Janny Scott, could be something of a first, as regards the mother of a living famous man.
Index:(1) Gunsmoke In Lincoln County. Phillip J. Rasch. (2)Riverhorse. William Least-Heat Moon. (3)The Third Terrorist. Jayna Davis. (4) The New Dealers War.(FDR) Thomas Fleming. <5> Black Listed By History.(Joe McCarthy) M. Stanton Evans. (6) Blue Highways. William Least-Heat Moon. (7) Dog Of The South. Charles Portis. (8)Heir Not Apparent.(Howard Hughes) Suzanne Finstad (9) O Rugged Land Of Gold.(Alaska) Martha Martin. (10) The Invincible Quest. (Richard M Nixon) Conrad Black. (11) The Life and Death of Adolf Hitler. Robert Payne.(12) Authority and Delinquency. Alex Comfort. (13)Why Orwell Matters. Christopher Hitchens. (14) Hitch 22. Christopher Hitchens. (15) The Observer Years. George Orwell. (16) The Forsaken Army (Stalingrad) Heinrich Gerlach. (17) Hoodwinked. Jack Cashill. (18)The Testament of Man. Vardis Fisher. (19) Going Rogue. Sarah Palin. (20)Rabbit Run. John Updike. (21) The Declaration of Independence & Constitution of the United States of America. (No need to revue this splendid document).
Gunsmoke In Lincoln County.
Phillip J. Rasch
Also: Frederick Nolan.
Robert K. DeArment.(1)
Copyright@1997 The National Association for Outlaw and Lawman History, Inc.
Western Publications, Stillwater, Oklahoma.
A truly remarkable book. The cover alone, although not meant to be an actual depiction of the two factions, brings on the interest. The history of the violent times of that era is very well documented. No loose unverified facts here. It was the feud between the Dolan, Riley, Murphy faction and the Tunstall, McSween, Chisum faction, that set off a small war in Lincoln County, New Mexico. Said only a thousand copies, pity, glad I have mine. Read of the deaths of John Tunstall,the Englishman and something of his employee, Billy the Kid, their paths had crossed and Billy's tragic demise was set. Billy is said to have vowed vengeance as he witnessed Morton and Hill, shooting down Tunstall. The two killers were members of a posse headed by Sheriff Brady, who turned a blind eye. That posse was deputised merely to deal with a civil matter concerning writs against the Tunstall holdings. Later, Billy was in the gang that shot down Brady and his deputy. He was sentenced to hang and escaped jail, only to be shot by one Pat Garatt at Fort Sumner.
One of the remarkable facets of this book is of the notation and records, briefly stated on the eventual history of the chief participants. Lawyer Alexander McSween, believed to be a Canadian, got into trouble with the faction who opposed Tunstall. It concerned a payment of $10,000 life insurance due to a Dolan fiancee and her relatives. Her father died visiting Germany, his native country. Had made his mark in Lincoln County. McSween did not pay any monies to the claimants. This after his trip to the reluctant insurance agents in St. Louis. He fled to the Tunstall holdings. On the murder of Tunstall and his deputy, McSween was an unwilling leader of the Tunstall faction. He was a marked man. We learn of Susan McSween and her success in cattle ranching, living to a well deserved old age. Colonel Nathan Dudley, finally dying in 1910 in respectability and old age. Turned his back on the pleas of Mrs McSween, to intervene against the Dolan faction. They burnt her house and killed her husband, when the military marched back to camp. This likely has to do with the creation of the "posse comitatus" act of 1878. The military not being responsible, where civilian law enforcement is available. There is the enigmatic character, Josiah "Doc" Scurlock, a Billy the Kid confederate and having nine lives. Finally dying in 1929, without a doubt, more peacefully than some of the men he killed or helped kill. Had Tunstall not been murdered in front of Billy...... well, who knows?
Across America by Boat.
William Least-Heat Moon. (2)
A Peter Davison Book.
Houghton and Mifflin.1999.
Some powerful stuff here. His laconic description of pollution on America's waterways, is quietly persuasive and is added to indicate his observance of this scene in contrast to the beauty of much of the waterways. He has obtained a small but water worthy craft and sails it from coast to coast. The native name for this hardy little vessel is the Nikawa. The detailed maps of this river route are fascinating for those who like poring over maps, especially if they know some of the areas shown. His start is in New York City Harbor and it is a five thousand mile trip to finish at Astoria, Oregon. This narrative is well documented. Real people are met and their stories are also told. This is a feat in itself, to combine such with his book. To have completed the journey shows one thing alone. This man sure does love America- warts and all.
I happened to be intrigued with the mention of "A Peter Davison Book". This above the Houghton-Mifflin title. He was a "poet, essayist, teacher, lecturer, editor and publisher." I happened on the posting of the April 2005 eulogy by Cullen Murphy. The magazine is the "Atlantic. This for Peter Davison (1928-2004). It is possible that we are able to read "River Horse" because of his influence. Something learned.
The Third Terrorist
The Middle East Connection to the Oklahoma City Bombing.
I have just obtained this book as recomended on Free Republic. Now I have a fine eye for good writing. Sometimes one is recomended to get a book of this nature and it is obvious in some cases, that the book is written with good intentions. In the haste to publish, sometimes these books are too quickly put together. Lack of an index often shows the case. Not so here. Meticulous work indeed. I will have many long moments with this book. The care and dedication of this author stands head and shoulders above a number of publications. One cries out on even a cursory glance at the contents, this: The figure of "John Doe 2", a man with middle-eastern facial characteristics, seen by witnesses as being with Timothy McVeigh and just prior to the explosion. 7,000 Iraqis were given refugee status in America, after the first incursion during Kuwait. Seemingly a very obvious presence in Oklahoma City. A possible bland indifference on the part of the government, to the sworn statements of local authorities and local witnesses. Some so called "refugees", were rabid supporters of Saddam Hussein.
More to follow. Wednesday 10th March. FR quoting Patriot Ledger.com reports that a man, one Al Husseini was arrested in Quincy for striking a homeless man in the head with a bottle. Jayna Davis says this man was indeed with Timothy McVeigh. Positive identification down to a tattoo on his arm. Freepers say she has been worn down by the complete indifference to her book, by authorities.
The New Dealers' War.
F.D.R. And The War Within World War II.
Thomas Fleming:Basic Books 2001. (4)
The struggle to get rid of Vice President Henry Wallace in 1944, by the inner echelon of the Democratic Party, indicates how that party has changed. FDR was coming up for a fourth term. He indicated that the democratic procedures should be followed. Wallace would have to present himself at the convention. The successful nominee was Harry S Truman. Wallace too radical of a socialist. Fifty years too early for him. The photograph of President Roosevelt, forced to go in an open vehicle,this in a cold November rain to dispel any doubts about his fitness, will haunt you. Five hours of a freezing rain soaked hell.
The chapter titled "Shaking Hands With Murder" (P.318-322) is a precursor of what Senator Joe McCarthy fought against over 8 years later. The infiltration of traitors. A picture is drawn with skill and leaves the reader to come to their own conclusions. That is of the three leaders. Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin. My own take is that the two men were sitting beside an ogre. Neither man ever admitted that they were completely taken by this man- Joseph Stalin. They both quietly knew he would annex large parts of Europe. To their shame, some of it was the territory of their own allies.
It should be added in defence of FDR, that the State Department had so many informants to Moscow, that Stalin knew everything that Roosevelt was going to do. Just released (May 2009) is the PBS/BBC documentary, "WW2, Behind Closed Doors, Stalin The Nazis And The West", England was rife with the same type informers to Stalin. Parts of it follow closely Thomas Fleming's history of that era. FDR was also a badly ailing man, the last thing he needed was long distance travel. He went to Yalta, Russia in February 1945,to meet with Churchill and Stalin. He died in April, back in America two months later.
Blacklisted By History
The Untold Story Of Senator Joe McCarthy.
And His Fight Against America's Enemies.
M.Stanton Evans. (5)
Crown Forum. New York 2007.
A superbly researched book. Again and again, the perfidy of the liberal press and politicians is shown. Yes, McCarthy was abrasive, yes, he did make errors.
A patriot and proven out by actual records. Typewritten pages of hundreds of names by the FBI and other agencies. All the enemies of McCarthy have is mostly innuendo which his detractors have fine tuned. The copies of various memoranda with some redacted names, by various agencies, tell the tale. Yet, the liberals still use him as a bogeyman. They have not got the common decency to re-evaluate that time and it's ramifications. Recently (2008) Senator Biden used McCarthy's name in relation to the "black list" of Hollywood actors/writers. It has been pointed out that McCarthy had virtually nothing to do with HUAC. They were the committee that went after the Hollywood Left. McCarthy went after the Army. One of his army targets finally admitted he passed classified information to the Soviet - and he is 91 years old(2008). He was another darling of the left at the time, just as was Alger Hiss.
The lesson here is that the detractors of McCarthy still have not changed one whit their dogma about the man. Even as late as April 2009, the figures of McCarthy supposedly claiming 205 Communists in the State Department, at Wheeling WV.in 1950, is being quoted. It was 57 persons; McCarthy's 57 persons quoted in the Denver Post with those figures in a headline, a few days later.
12th August 09. Glenn Beck (an unlikely figure) weighed in on the late Senator McCarthy. He observed the fallacy believed by most Americans regarding HUAC and Joseph McCarthy. Not Joe's thing. Glenn Beck mentioned the ominous disapearance of pertinent documents.I would presume documents that might exonerate Joe. Even to this day skullduggery with White House documents exists. This is the smuggling out of documents by a hitherto impeccable official, stored in an unlikely piece of clothing.
Blue Highways (A Journey Into America).
William Least Heat-Moon. (6)
Back Bay Books/Little Brown & Company.
Hatchet Book Group USA. First published 1982.
A little oddysey on a budget, a true story on travelling the back roads of America. The author seems to be indicating that persons in small town America have arrived at an acceptance of whom they are and are essentially- for the most part are quite happy. The photographs prove that the author did indeed take those highways. Some of them are grainy, but their informality makes them a quiet joy in many respects. I had chanced into one town that he visited. Shelby, Montana. I to the Mint Bar and he to the Oil City Bar. I was shown the revolver with flat nosed bullets that was kept behind the bar. The bell for the Dempsey-Gibbons fight was there- painted gold. Shades of 1925. That America cannot and must not ever disappear.
The Dog Of The South.
The Overlook Press.
Woodstock and New York. (7)
The cover is of a bus coming towards the viewer. Shrouded in mist. Catches a moment of loneliness. Overlook Press took a chance and reprinted the Portis books, mostly not reprinted for over 15 years or so. More readers should be aware of Arkansas resident Charles Portis writings.
A remarkable word picture of various kinds of Americans that existed- maybe still do, in the 1970's. A little more is owed here. Ray Midge goes on an oddysey to get his errant wife back. She has absconded with her ex-husband (what a character he is) Midge gets as far as the then British Honduras. His little excursions into the bar scene and picking up a Dr Reo Symes; his knowledge of various automobiles, and how to fix em' are a classic. We learn of hotel life in Belize, British Honduras. Wife Norma is quite a gal. Flighty but lovable.
The laconic statement at the end of this book, beats most laconic statements I have ever read.
One of the most fascinating and well researched books, which the author took six years to finalise is:
Heir Not Apparent.
Texas Monthly Press.
Copyright: Suzanne Finstad 1984.
The search for Howard Hughes Jr. Those associated with his family. This to identify and separate claimants to the Hughes immense fortune- he did not leave a proven will. The hunt for any offspring of Hughes uncles and aunts was on. It, at the same time of indicating an incredible and expensive genealogical search, is a picture of an old-fashioned day and time. The author deals in a professional, yet kindly approach to her subjects, those living and those long departed. From Judge Felix T Hughes (1838-1926) to Actress Terry Moore (still attractive in her fifties).
The photographs are a gem. The young woman with whom Hughes father nearly married, is shown. She could hold her own with the modern day beautiful iconic women . Even more interesting are some of the women of another era. Hughes uncle, Rupert Hughes,(1872-1956), married a younger woman, Adelaide Bissell Manola. Her mother was the famed Marion Manola, a light opera star. (Marion Elixia Martin (1863-1914). Marion Manola's flamboyance and problems would make a whole book. The lives of a glamorous Aunt, Greta Hughes (Jeanne Greta, opera singer) and Agnes Hedge Hughes with her eight men friends, reveal a tangled web of romances gone sour- pity. The researchers had to dig into the past of these ladies to find if there were any concealed offspring. Anyone that can get a used copy will not regret it.
O Rugged Land of Gold.
Martha Martin. (9)
Set in the gold rush days. Numerous reprints. Later reprint
Alaska Vanessa Press, 1989.
Said by one critic, this is a combination of experiences and imagination. A beautiful idea by any standards. Written as a journal. Her husband leaves the cabin on a mission, presumably to get help for her. Weather conditions stop him from returning. She has to deliver her child and is determined to survive and see the child live.
Author born in Alaska and an accomplished woman who graduated in Alaska. Admirers of Governor Palin will relish this account of an indomitable woman, left to fend for herself. The author lived until 80 years and is interred in Alaska. This is the second of two books, that I and my liberal spouse shared together. Of these choices of mine. I should mention my wife's approval of another book. On her part, because it could be read as a rebuttal to hard and fast beliefs within the Christian religion. For example the account of Adam and Eve. That book was "The Golden Rooms" (See #18) by Vardis Fisher. One can easily defend the Christian beliefs as I do myself, by taking the ascent of mankind as still being within the book of Genesis.
The Invincible Quest.
>The Life Of Richard Milhous Nixon.
McClelland & Stewart Ltd. Toronto, Ontario. (10)
I must confess I have not yet done this book anything like near justice. A work not to be taken lightly. Just as the picture of President Roosevelt in an open touring car in the rain, just before his final election stands out, so does one picture of Richard Nixon. He is bowling ten pin and has the style. I am advised by a Freeper to purchase "Silent Coup" the story of the plot to dethrone Richard Nixon. This I am in the process of doing. It is out of print at this time.
Now I digress. I hope the author is released to serve his term in Canada. The two American border patrol men be released to their families. My two New Year wishes.
Thanks! (Jan 19th 2009)
May 18th 2009. Appeal granted to Supreme Court hearing for Conrad Black. Can only hope here for his release. I noticed that I had missed an update on Lord Black. As of fall 2010 he has been granted bail. Thanks to who ever worked so hard to put this gentleman back into society. June 2011. Lord Black has been sent back to prison with a reduced sentence. Very hard for the judiciary to have let him off completely. Not that I am qualified in anyway to know what should have been done . Yet the law is in a difficult postition to avoid the taint of favouritism for highly placed persons. A neat way out would be to try to ship Lord Black to Canada to serve out his sentence. Some hasty paperwork needed here.
May 4th 2012. The Return of the Native. Thank you, - who ever you maybe.
The Life and Death of Adolf Hitler(
Robert Payne (11)
Praeger Publishers Inc.
New York and Washington 1973.
The life of Hitler is well known to me as regarding WW2. Much gone over. What is fascinating is the genealogy of Hitler. The hard scrabble years in Vienna, the grind and despair of unemployment. Further sinking because of improper nutrition. That he could not have turned this to compassion for his fellow human beings is the world's tragedy. Ironically, the history of the Waldviertel, Lower Austria, where Hitler's ancestry evolves, is that likely between three and four different racial groups occupied that area over hundreds of years.
The account of the poor peasant woman, Maria Anna Schicklgruber (born 1795)and her being left with an illegitimate child (Alois)in 1837, at over forty years of age, makes one think about the lot of these poor peasant women of the Waldviertel. The mystery concerning the man who married her in 1842, one Johann Georg Heidler,(born 1792), will likely never come to light. Her son did not use the surname Heidler, during the marriage of Maria. He was still Alois Schicklgruber,( 1837-1903),well after both step father and natural mother had died. Suddenly changed his name at 39 years of age, brought about by a forged birth baptismal entry. Some historians blame a parish priest for complicity in the alteration of the birth entry. He even is blamed for mispelling Heidler as Hitler ,when he transcribed the record. Now a respected customs official, Alois wanted it to be known he was of legitimate marriage. Alois(Shicklgruber)Hitler was Adolf Hitler's father; his son from a third marriage.
We learn of a half brother of Adolf Hitler (1889-1945), also named Alois Hitler.(born 1882) from Alois Hitler's second marriage. A rogue and a scamp. He emigrated to England as a young man. He married a comely Irish girl, Bridget Dowling. Returned to Germany and was there during Hitler's regime. He appears to have left the Irish lady and his son in England. She earned a few pounds from the English press during the 1930's, when her name- Bridget Hitler, identified her. She fed them with little anecdotes. Patrick Hitler, her son, was born in Liverpool, England in 1911. She,luckily visited America in 1939. She was to promote a book about the Hitler connection. She was stranded by the outbreak of war. She helped sell war bonds for America later. Patrick served in the U.S. Navy in WW2, changed his name first though. Patrick Stuart Houston it was. This has fiction beaten.
A family tree is provided and makes some interesting reading. Robert Payne has to introduce his book with a burst of invective against Hitler. Smart move. Lest someone claim he tries to humanize the whole man. No, but up to and including Vienna about 1913, Payne does get to who the man was originally.
One could blame power to an extent. What power does to some people!
Authority and Delinquency.
A study in the Psychology of Power.
Alex Comfort. (
Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd. 1950.
Sphere Books 1970.(12)
"Even less different from overt criminals are those latent criminals,high in office, whom society venerates as it's chiefs".
Cesare Lombroso (1835-1909).
Curiously enough, this absolutely well footnoted work on the personalities of those who attain power, was ignored in the Comfort obituary.
Alex Comfort later wrote a sex guide on the joys of sex. This was his monument, according to virtually every obituary . Yet, this investigative work, which can be used by the socialistic left and the right leaning conservative reader, names names. Hitler and Stalin of course, with a hint at Winston Churchill's role at the siege of Sidney St. My favourite entry credited to Ranyard West.
"Political power offers superb platforms to the unconscious play actor from childhood - to shout defiance at erstwhile school-fellows whose hands are no longer able to reach out and twist his arm,to prove the prizeman in yet one more test, to hurl yet more fiends down to hell before the final reckoning comes, to scoff at still more nannies and greybeards"
Comfort quotes Ranyard West: Psychology and World Order. Penguin Books 1945.
Why Orwell Matters
New York. 2002. (13)
Another Freeper recomendation. Hitchens boldly quotes and is quite fair to some of Orwell's critics, no nitpicking. Then he demolishes them, but giving credit where credit is due. I notice that a brief attention is given to writer George Gissing(1857-1903). The tragedy of this talented man and deepest, darkest London, has me off on more research. His love for "Nell" - Marianne Helen Harrison (1858-1888) is one that indicates the power of passion. I must have some of Gissing's works.
One of the amusing things about Mr Hitchens, is on his depreciation of Orwell's distaste for overt homosexuals. Orwell did not hate, he was simply bothered by their incursions in various London Hotels. He did not need them and they used to bother people with their approaches. He was reflecting a moderate view as opposed to working class views of the day. Hitchens tries to use the "new and enlightened" present day views to judge Orwell- somewhat naive, still Hitchens grew up in a different era. He has no idea of prevailing attitudes in Orwell's time, re homosexualtity. I will have more to say about this otherwise valuable little book later.
I was able to obtain a copy:
McClelland & Stewart.
A biography by Christopher Hitchens. No loss here, the local public library has three copies. Mixed feelings on this work, but it is well worth a read. His mother, as a very young woman was facially simply stunning. As a young English servicewoman in WW2, the naval Wrens, she, no doubt fell into marrying a much older authoritative naval commander. Not being fulfilled in marriage, she had an affair. Sadly both participants comitted suicide in a hotel in Greece. It is hinted that neither could face the "Commander". We can feel sadness for them both.
Whatever one may think about the intellectual class, the man is one of a kind. His insults against President Reagan is enough to make many readers explode unduly. Hitchens faces the awful realization that he is not immortal. Further..... Hitchens valiantly supported Salman Rushdie, who was under a Fatwa of death for his book "The Satanic Verses". He personally visited Rushdie. Hitchens scorn for the weak kneed intelligensia and their inane, unreasoned blaming of Rushdie, is a saving grace. For the very mobs in England demonstrating and screaming for the death of Rushdie, got a pass from the politically correct elite. Hitchens dryly observes that Rushdie did not form a mob. He only wrote a book.
The Observer Years
Atlantic Books. London 2003.(15)
This is a collection of articles and reviews by George Orwell, starting in 1942 and ending in 1949. Orwell's writings bring back to me and all too vividly of life in England during WW2 and the hard scrabble years just afterward. His review of Marie Paneth's account of her work with the "feral children" of "Branch Street" - a disguised name for a street in Paddington, is very penetrating. Of interest is Orwell's view of Paris in 1945. His gentle but quizzical account of the French after the German occupation, may leave some of us puzzled about these people. Their way of life continued as if nothing had ever happened previously. Their own returning ex-prisoners of war getting scarcely a second glance, as they shuffle off the transports.
The Forsaken Army.
Cassell Military Books. 2007.(16)
Reprinted by many different publishers. One of the greatest soldier's stories ever written. Gerlach was in Von Paulus Sixth Army at Stalingrad. He was a prisoner of the Russians for five years. They tore up his notes. Put aside the differences of the Allies and the enemy - and you can do this. Then read about the hated SS killing those who retreated. Though a loyal German as such, this man does not like Nazis. His statements on Adolf Hitler who left the German Army under Von Paulus, to die at Stalingrad, leave no doubt where he stands. Hitler refused to let that army attempt to break out from the hell in that city and retreat.
How Intellectual Hucksters Have Highjacked American Culture.
Nelson Current Books.
From the brutal, mindless slaying of Officer Danny Faulkner by Mumia in Philadelphia and including the slaying of the FBI agents by Pelletier, Cashill gets to the subject of the perfidious leftists. The lies, the obfuscations, the martyrdom of wicked men to include accounts of "indisputable" yet slanted beliefs held by some of the public. Dealing with the absolute vile twisting, by Hollywood of the Scopes trial. "Inherit The Wind". (The trial about evolution in Tennessee, 1925). Thinly disguised, it is perversion of the facts, that seem almost like that of the very devil himself. The devil that sometimes seems to find himself in Hollywood. In addition is the account of author Rigoberta Menchu who has a Nobel peace prize. From Guatamala, she has a lot of true horror stories about the cruelities of both the standing army and insurgents, to the local population. Unfortunately she had appeared to have invented as much as half of it. Horrible though the atrocities were, again and again it was proven that she was not there to witness what she said she saw. A test of the fortitude of the author and indeed a litmus test, concern two further icons of liberalism.
One is Alex Haley of "Roots". Ah, the disillusion of yours truly. I had started my own genealogy research on the impetus of Haley's graphic story. Not true. A substantial payment to a Mr Hank Courlander on his book about Africa. Courlander had to agree to remain silent about the whole subject- and he did. Then there is Martin Luther King and the thesis of a Jack Boozer. Ah, plagarism! Mr Cashill goes in regardless and thank goodness he does. Now there was a communist once called Willi Munzenberg, who believed in lying to "tell the truth". His doctrine lives on today. Regretfully to our knowledge,the tactic used to deliver some "news," put out by some of the MSM. .
The Testament of Man.
13 separate publications. Book number two.
The Golden Rooms.
(copyright Vardis Fisher 1962). (18)
Reprints are numerous.
My memory has reverted back in time to one of America's incredibly gifted authors, considering his introspection and fine work, few reviews seem to occur today. He was born in Idaho, just before the turn of the last century. I will catch up and buy via used books on various outlets. My wife recalled how we both enjoyed The Golden Rooms.
Fisher endeavours to bring about the understanding of how Homo Sapiens evolved from a brutal, unthinking survivalist origin, to the development of a conscience unique to mankind . This is dealt with in the second of his 13 books, if in paperback. This is the Golden Rooms. For on killing a fellow human being, the killer seems to feel the stirings of a sad regret at what he has done. This group of books leads off with "Darkness And The Deep", Later it is said that the last two books are "a thinly disguised biography"- be that as it may, "a deeply introspective triumph". A reviewer used these terms regarding the life of Vridar Hunter in the 1920's through to post WW2, as a chronicle of the inner conflict of modern man. One can agonize with Fisher/Hunter at the state of the human race. Though I believe Mr Fisher took an atheistic view, I hold it that the Christian religion has it right. Just that things took a certain time.
Harper Collins Publishers
I will have time to carefully read and re read this book and I hope it lives up to expectations.
A Fawcett Crest Book. (20)
Copyright John Updike. 1960.
At about 28 years of age, Updike, who left us last year, leaves us with the Harry Angstrom story. Harry is now 26 years old. A former high school basketball hero, time has crept up on him. He lives in Pennsylvania and it is 1958. The penetrating and descriptive documentation of a city, it's little alleys, streets, neigbourhood taverns is a joy; for those who wish to travel back in time. Harry somehow has the American dream ahead of him. His desperate struggle to stand and fight for it, quickly goes. His high school sweetheart, now his wife, drifts into discontent with bringing up a son and another child on the way. He runs twice.
His second run is up into the hill that looms above a cemetery. He is chased by the Reverend Eccles. He is running to escape the guilt of the death by accident, of his second child. At the funeral, Harry sees accusing eyes following him. He is being blamed for leaving his wife alone to cope. He has gone to live with another woman. The child had accidentally drowned in a bath, while the mother leaves the room. Updike then gives us a description of a tangled woodland where Harry blunders into to escape the hostility. The feeling of being hemmed in- superb stuff. We can feed sad for Harry, some of us for ourselves with him.
(21)The Declaration Of Independence And The Constitution Of The United States.
(my copy) Penguin Books.
New York. London. Toronto. Victoria (Australia). Edition 1995.
Needs no introduction.