Monday, May 15, 2017

Who said it XV

"'Well, I'm back,' he said."  So uttered Sam to end The Lord of the Rings. But, no this isn't yet another LOTR post. I'm just borrowing it to explain that I've been delinquent here because I had my daughter's wedding a few weeks ago, which really started in terms of gathering together a couple of days after my last post. Then a few days after her wedding we left for another wedding in Minneapolis, which was followed by a week of touring the Midwest - Minnesota, S. Dakota, Wyoming, Iowan and Illinois (lot of driving, definitely over 2000 miles). Then I came home and got sick for a while. And all during that time, I didn't write anything. Well, I'm back.

This is the 15th such game. The usual "rules" apply and I try to make the four multiple choices famous people pretty much everyone with a reasonable education has heard about. I have to have it somewhere in my own library (though I cheat sometimes) and I admit if I didn't know the answers, I would have to guess too for the most part.  Some of the questions are inspired by the current news cycle, Russia, Mexico and civil rights being so much in the news these day, but that won't help you solve these. Answers are below after the last questions. Write down your own answers on something before you look.

1. 

"The great difference between Young America and Old Fogy, is the result of Discoveries, Inventions, AND Improvements. These, in turn, are the result of observation, reflection and experiment. For instance, it is quite certain that ever since water has been boiled in covered vessels, men have seen the lids of the vessels rise and fall a little, with a sort of fluttering motion, by force of the steam; but so long as this was not specially observed, and reflected and experimented upon, it came to nothing. At length however, after many thousand years, some man observes this long-known effect of hot water lifting a pot-lid, and begins a train of reflection upon it. He says “Why, to be sure, the force that lifts the pot-lid, will lift any thing else, which is no heavier than the pot-lid. “And, as man has much hard lifting to do, can not this hot-water power be made to help him?” He has become a little excited on the subject, and he fancies he hears a voice answering “Try me” He does try it; and of that tremendous, and now well known agent, called steam-power. This is not the actual history in detail, but the general principle."

a. Lincoln  b. Teddy Roosevelt  c. Einstein  d. Trump

2.

"The more I see of the Czar, the Kaiser and the Mikado, the better I am content with democracy, even if we have to include the American newspaper as one of its assets – liability would be a better term. Russia is so corrupt, so treacherous and shifty, and so incompetent, that I am utterly unable to say whether or not it will make peace or break off the negotiations at any moment. Japan is, of course, entirely selfish, though with a veneer of courtesy and with infinitely more knowledge of what it wants and capacity to get it."

a. Lincoln b. Teddy Roosevelt  c. Einstein d. Trump

3.

"My skepticism is based on the fact that it was America that lent expression itself to pronounced reservations regarding the effectiveness of conferences. Without doubt, the greatest council of all time was the League of Nations. It was the will of an American president that created this body. All nations of this world together were to solve the problems of mankind at its council table. However, the first state to withdraw from this endeavor was the United States. And this was case because President Wilson himself already had voiced severe misgivings about the possibility of solving truly decisive international problems at the council table."

a. FDR  b. Adolph Hitler  c. Winston Churchill  d. Trump

4.

"It is the shallow fashion of these times to dismiss the Tsarist regime as a purblind, corrupt, incompetent tyranny. But a survey of its thirty months' war with Germany and Austria should correct these loose impressions and expose the dominant facts. We may measure the strength of the Russian Empire by the battering it had endured, by the disasters it had survived, by the inexhaustible forces it had developed, and by the recovery it had made. In the government of states, when great events are afoot, the leader of the nation, whoever he be, is held accountable for failure and vindicated by success. No matter who wrought the toil, who planned the struggle, to the supreme responsible authority belongs the blame or credit."

a. FDR  b. Adolph Hitler  c. Winston Churchill  d. Harry S Truman

5.

"I know these Latin Americans. I grew up with Mexicans. They'll come right into your back yard and take it over if you let them. And the next day they'll be right up on your porch, barefoot and weighing one hundred and thirty pounds and they'll take that, too. But you say to 'em right at the start, 'Hold on, just wait a minute,' they'll know they're dealing with somebody who'll stand up. And after that you can get along fine."

a. Harry S. Truman  b. JFK  c. LBJ  d. Trump

6.

"In a country where the sole employer is the State, opposition means death by slow starvation. The old principle, who does not work shall not eat, has been replaced by a new one: who does not obey shall not eat."

a. Leon Trotsky  b. Hermann Goring   c. George McGovern  d. Trump 

7.

During the "Freedom Rides," in 1961 a little problem developed. They couldn't find anyone to drive the bus from Birmingham to Montgomery, Alabama and then to Mississippi. A frustrated politician complained to Mr. Cruit, a Greyhound bus superintendant. It didn't take long for him to explode.

"[Cruit]: Drivers refuse to drive.
[Politician]: Do you know how to drive a bus?
[Cruit]. No.
[Politician] Well, surely somebody in the damn bus company can drive a bus, can't they? . . . I think you should --had better be getting in touch with Mr. Greyhound or whoever Greyhound is and somebody better give us an answer to this question. I am--the Government--is going to be very much upset if this group does not get to continue their trip. . . . Under the law they are entitled to transportation provided by Greyhound . . . . Somebody better get in the damn bus and get it going and get these people on their way. Mr. Cruit, I think that if some of your people would just sit down and think for a few minutes that somebody would be able to drive a bus 80 or 90 miles."

That politician was:
a.  Bobby Kennedy   b. LBJ  c.  George McGovern  d. "Bull" Connor

8. 

"Jefferson thinks he shall by this step get a reputation of a humble modest, meek man, wholly without ambition or vanity. He may even have deceived himself into this belief. But if the prospect opens, the world will see . . . he is as ambitious as Oliver Cromwell. . . . Though his desertion may be a loss to us of some talent, I am not sorry for it on the whole, because his soul is poisoned with ambition."

a. Alexander Hamilton  b. George Washington c. John Adams  d. Benjamin Franklin

9.

"Our friendship was not easy, but I will miss it. If you end it today, that doubtless means that it had to end. Many things drew us together, few divided us. But these few were still too many. Friendship, too, tends to become totalitarian. It insists upon either total agreement or total discord. And even the partyless behave like militants in an imaginary party. I shall not go through all this again: it is in the order of things. Bur precisely for this reason, I would have so much preferred that our present quarrel went straight to the heart of the matter, without getting confused with the nasty smell of wounded vanity. Who would have said, much less thought, that everything would finish between us in a petty author's quarrel . . . I did not want to reply. Who would I be convincing? Your enemies certainly, perhaps my friends. And you, whom do you hope to convince? Your friends and my enemies."


"    a. Jefferson to Adams   b.  Thoreau to Emerson  c. Sartre to Camus   d. Olivia de Havilland to Joan Fontaine

10. 

"I say again that I'm not a racist. I don't believe in any form of segregation or anything like that. I'm for brotherhood for everybody, but I don't believe in forcing brotherhood upon people who don't want it. Let us practice brotherhood among ourselves, and then if others want to practice brotherhood with us, we're for practicing it with them also. But I don't that we should run around trying to love somebody who doesn't love us."

a.  Gandhi    b. George Wallace    c. Malcolm X   d. Trump

_________________________________________________________________________________

Answers

1. 


"The great difference between Young America and Old Fogy, is the result of Discoveries, Inventions, AND Improvements. . . . 

a. Lincoln.  He liked technology, trains and such. Given how limited his formal education was - virtually none - his mind was a marvel. I can easily see Einstein or Roosevelt having written this.

2.

"The more I see of the Czar, the Kaiser and the Mikado, the better I am content with democracy, even if we have to include the American newspaper as one of its assets – liability would be a better term. Russia is so corrupt, so treacherous and shifty, and so incompetent, that I am utterly unable to say whether or not it will make peace or break off the negotiations at any moment. Japan is, of course, entirely selfish, though with a veneer of courtesy and with infinitely more knowledge of what it wants and capacity to get it."

That was b. Teddy Roosevelt  I thought this was a gimme. Why would it be Lincoln or Einstein? Only Roosevelt was arbitor between Russia and Japan. I guess it could be Trump, given the broad assessments, but I think even he knows there is no Czar, Kaiser and Mikado right now.

3.

"My skepticism is based on the fact that it was America that lent expression itself to pronounced reservations regarding the effectiveness of conferences. Without doubt, the greatest council of all time was the League of Nations. It was the will of an American president that created this body. All nations of this world together were to solve the problems of mankind at its council table. However, the first state to withdraw from this endeavor was the United States. And this was case because President Wilson himself already had voiced severe misgivings about the possibility of solving truly decisive international problems at the council table."

This could have been FDR or Churchill but it was a very sober sounding b. Adolph Hitler. If you read everything he said before and after this paragraph it would't seem that way. But, I cheat. In any event, he has his facts wrong too. Wilson fought for it in America against opposition from those who felt it was giving up sovereignty. It was a noble idea, but he handled it badly. 

4.

"It is the shallow fashion of these times to dismiss the Tsarist regime as a purblind, corrupt, incompetent tyranny. But a survey of its thirty months' war with Germany and Austria should correct these loose impressions and expose the dominant facts. We may measure the strength of the Russian Empire by the battering it had endured, by the disasters it had survived, by the inexhaustible forces it had developed, and by the recovery it had made. In the government of states, when great events are afoot, the leader of the nation, whoever he be, is held accountable for failure and vindicated by success. No matter who wrought the toil, who planned the struggle, to the supreme responsible authority belongs the blame or credit."

This time it could have been FDR, Hitler or Truman. But it was c. Winston Churchill.

5.

"I know these Latin Americans. I grew up with Mexicans. They'll come right into your back yard and take it over if you let them. And the next day they'll be right up on your porch, barefoot and weighing one hundred and thirty pounds and they'll take that, too. But you say to 'em right at the start, 'Hold on, just wait a minute,' they'll know they're dealing with somebody who'll stand up. And after that you can get along fine."

This time I could see Truman, LBJ or Trump, but not JFK.   It was  c. LBJ, who really made Trump look like a true gentleman in some ways.

6.

"In a country where the sole employer is the State, opposition means death by slow starvation. The old principle, who does not work shall not eat, has been replaced by a new one: who does not obey shall not eat."

      Okay, if you thought that was Trump you have to read something other than the NY Times. It was a. Leon Trotsky.

7.

During the "Freedom Rides," in 1961 a little problem developed. . . . 

I love this quote just because it is fun watching the pol blow up in frustration. I don't know if McGovern would have sounded like that.  LBJ and Bobby Kennedy fit because they were both relentless arm-twisters and explosive. Why would it be Bull Connor (if you know who he was)?
      It was Jack's little brother, a.  Bobby Kennedy. I wonder if he really thought there was a Mr. Greyhound who owned the company or if he was just being sarcastic. In any event, he did get a driver eventually - I don't know who or how they did it because death was quite likely. The violence the riders, even reporters and feds faced makes you sick to read about. And the local police just watched. This was one of America's most despicable and heroic periods. Most of the heroes are nameless or forgotten. 

8. 

"Jefferson thinks he shall by this step get a reputation of a humble modest, meek man, wholly without ambition or vanity. He may even have deceived himself into this belief. But if the prospect opens, the world will see . . . he is as ambitious as Oliver Cromwell. . . . Though his desertion may be a loss to us of some talent, I am not sorry for it on the whole, because his soul is poisoned with ambition."

Certainly Hamilton felt that way and I think Washington came to eventually. Frankly was more subtle in taking down a man and he and Jefferson got along well, maybe b/c Jefferson was such an admirer and did not see Franklin as an opponent. I think this was a gimme if you've read much about the founders. Adams badmouthed almost everybody - especially the other founders.  c. John Adams

9.

"Our friendship was not easy, but I will miss it. If you end it today, that doubtless means that it had to end. Many things drew us together, few divided us. . . .


"    Jefferson and Adams had a long feud, which they famously patched up with a long correspondence. But neitherwrote this at the end of the first friendship. It could have been Thoreau. I've written here before about some of his and Emerson's issues.  Olivia de Havilland to Joan Fontaine are Hollywood sisters who stopped talking long ago. I think de Havilland was a bit of an author. I don't know if Fontaine wrote her own auto-biography. In any event, there estrangement has been the subject of several books. The usual crazy story, but it's mostly about a dysfunctional family, sex and sibling rivalry. Fontaine died a few years ago, but the older of the two, de Havilland is over 100. In any event, he answer was c. Sartre to Camus, more particularly Sartre's reply to Camus, all published. Like so many groups of famous men and/or women, they seem to stop talking to one another eventually over petty spats. Come to think of it, though it's not that long of a list, the number of people I talk to has gotten smaller too, either by their choice or mine. So maybe it's everybody and we just know about them because they are famous.  Some people just can't stand being disagreed with, no matter how small the issue or how much more they have in common and some great "thinkers" seem very sensitive in this way. The arguments among these French existentialists were pretty much idiotic. 

10. 

"I say again that I'm not a racist. I don't believe in any form of segregation or anything like that. I'm for brotherhood for everybody, but I don't believe in forcing brotherhood upon people who don't want it. Let us practice brotherhood among ourselves, and then if others want to practice brotherhood with us, we're for practicing it with them also. But I don't that we should run around trying to love somebody who doesn't love us."

Trump was not the answer to any question. Sorry. I can't see the answer being Gandhi because who thought he was a racist and frankly everything in the quote sounds the opposite of his philosophy. George Wallace was for segregation, at least before he was shot and paralyzed. After that I know he came around, but I suppose it could have been him at some transitional point, unless he had a sudden transition - I don't really know how it happened but he ended up asking blacks to forgive him. If you don't know who he was do some reading, because he was an important figure, if a negative one, in the 1960s-70s. He ran for president four times and thankfully lost each time. The answer was c. Malcolm X. If the answer doesn't sound like the Malcolm X you are used to hearing about, he also changed quite a bit after he was thrown out of the Nation of Islam. This speech was just after his former friends burned his house down and just before they shot him dead. His is a fascinating story, and though initially very angry, he had some very valid points too. His autobiography, written with Alex Haley, has been criticized as fanciful in parts. But, I would bet there are not a lot of autobiographies that couldn't be criticized if you took the time. I couldn't imagine the diversity of opinions, facts and mostly criticism you'd get about me if someone took the trouble to interview my friends, never mind those who completely hate me.

About Me

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I started this blog in September, 2006. Mostly, it is where I can talk about things that interest me, which I otherwise don't get to do all that much, about some remarkable people who should not be forgotten, philosophy and theories (like Don Foster's on who wrote A Visit From St. Nicholas and my own on whether Santa is mostly derived from a Norse god) and analysis of issues that concern me. Often it is about books. I try to quote accurately and to say when I am paraphrasing (more and more). Sometimes I blow the first name of even very famous people, often entertainers. I'm much better at history, but once in a while I see I have written something I later learned was not true. Sometimes I fix them, sometimes not. My worst mistake was writing that Beethoven went blind, when he actually went deaf. Feel free to point out an error. I either leave in the mistake, or, if I clean it up, the comment pointing it out. From time to time I do clean up grammar in old posts as, over time I have become more conventional in my grammar, and I very often write these when I am falling asleep and just make dumb mistakes. It be nice to have an editor, but . . . .