Bogus Movie Is Considered One of Greatest; Really a Scam
February 8, 2010

Idiotic Scene From "Historic" Birth of a Nation

Idiotic Scene From "Historic" Birth of a Nation

On This Date in History: First, on an interesting note relating to baseball and Bonds as well as a recent post, I found out that Hank Aaron’s birthday was February 5. The man he passed as the all time home run king, Babe Ruth, celebrated his birthday on February 6. That’s kinda unusual. Then, I got to thinking…which is dangerous…I had a post regarding the Great Baltimore Fire on Feb 7-8 1904. Speculation is that it started from a carelessly tossed cigarette or cigar. Now, Ruth would have just celebrated his 9th birthday and his father’s bar is located close by to where the fire started. I don’t think that Ruth had been sent away to St. Mary’s Orphanage when he was 9, so what about the possibility that the fire was started by the juvenile delinquent George Herman Ruth!

Griffith's KKK Saves The South from Reconstruction...Nonsense

Griffith's KKK Saves The South from Reconstruction...Nonsense

That would make a good story line for our feature of the day…Kentuckian David Wark Griffith.   He was born not far from Louisville in La Grange and became famous for the first full length feature film, Birth of a Nation. The film opened on this date in 1915 and Birth of a Nation is  widely regarded as historic and monumnetal and such. I could never figure out why because it’s stupid and it’s biased and racist and inaccurate. I believe that the notorieiity comes, not due to the content, but instead for the techniques that Griffith used and pioneered that gives the film its place in history.

Griffith was born in 1875 to an Ex-Confederate. Now, much of the nation today thinks of Kentucky as being in the South. But, when I moved here, I couldn’t believe I was moving so far north. I thought I was in Yankeeland. Kim Stevens is from Alabama and she married a guy from Louisville. Her family said that they thought they could accept that she was marrying a “Yankee.” People who are really in the South don’t think of Kentucky as being in the South. Oh…the anger I get from people about that. I tell people to move to Jackson, Mississippi if they want to find out what the South is like. I point out that about 25,000 served in the Confederacy from Kentucky while over 130,00o served in the Union. I point out that Louisville was home to the

Griffith's KKK Saves The Ladies! More Foolishness

Griffith's KKK Saves The Ladies! More Foolishness

Army of the Ohio and 75,000 Union Troops who were invited into the state by the legislature in late 1861. I point out that Louisville averages over 15 inches of snow a year and often gets below zero. I point out that St. Louis is exactly 250 miles due west, was a major city in a border state yet no one calls them the South. My thesis had to do with Loiusville’s true roots being with the North but that they purposely realigned themselves with the South for economic reasons after the war. That’s where the myth of the Kentucky Colonel comes from. Louisville had the only working railroad into the South after the war and wanted to capitalize economically for the rebuilding south and so they basically said, “why, we wuz with ya all the time boys!! Do business with us, not them Yankees!” Never mind that Braxton Bragg came into the state with an Army of 45, 000 hoping to get Kentuckians to join the Confederate cause. Kentuckians declined, leaving Bragg to refer to Kentuckians as a bunch of “shuffling middlemen.” Now, there were no book burnings, but Kentuckians simply left out all references to the North when they wrote the history of the state, specifically the Memorial History of Louisville to 1896. They had a whole section on the Southern Exposition but said not one word about the National Industrial Exposition that lasted twice as long. They made no reference to a huge event that became national in scope in 1885 celebrating the birthday of US Grant. It’s on Grant’s Tomb in the form of a plaque but is found nowhere (except my published article…Ohio Valley History Fall 2008… and thesis) because they wanted no one to find out about it. It messed up their story.

Protesters Were Pretty Close To the Mark

Protesters Were Pretty Close To the Mark

Well, DW Griffith was part of the mythmaking when he made Birth of a Nation. For the first month of its release, it was called The Clansmen and was a biased view of the Civil War and Reconstruction. It portrayed African Americans in an awful light and as evil and bad. It created the illusion of the Ku Klux Klan as some heroic figures. Now, US Grant had crushed the Klan in the 1870’s. But, not long after Griffith’s stupid movie, the Klan re-emerged to be a scurge on the land for decades to come. There is little doubt that Griffith’s film helped sway public support toward the reborn group that became “anti” all sorts of things, not just African Americans. It’s an idiotic film. It was censored in some cities and sparked riots in many northern cities. The newly formed NAACP tried to have it banned. Griffith did agree to cut out some particularly offensive scenes. But, the film itself is largely historically a fraud and I suppose it set the stage for historic movies to come as most Hollywood historically based films are not accurate…don’t believe everything you see.

Fairbanks, Pickford, Chaplin and Griffith: Founders of United Artists in 1919

There are some interesting things about the film though was that Griffith began the idea of feature length films. He also was the first to make actors rehearse before shooting scenes, thus increasing the quality of the acting. Griffith helped pioneer the use of zooms and close ups and panning camera shots. He also had breakthroughs in editing techniques that are still used today. His work with the actors helped launch the big careers of people like Mary Pickford, Lionel Barrymore and Lillian Gish. He later went on to form United Artists with Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks. So, Griffith does have a place in film history….just don’t buy his work of propaganda and foolishness AS history…its nonsense.

12Z GFS Called For over 5 inches through Wed

I Told You So! (at least I think so)

Weather Bottom Line:  Well, I’m breaking out Colonel Klink because this is pretty close to an “I told you so” as I’ve had in awhile.  Then again, maybe I should wait until this event actually happens before I claim victory because it’s still not a slam dunk.  But, I like Werner Klemper so there you go.  What am I prematurely crowing about?  First off,  I’ve been saying for days that I didn’t see how we were going to get above freezing today or any other day this week.  At 5pm we touched 31 in Louisville.  Hmmm…I suppose it’s still possible that we move warmer but at this point I claim victory. Then, I’ve been telling you since last Wednesday that we could see a pretty decent snow on Tuesday and Wednesday.   Then, I let you know that some data was trying to bring in rain in between the snow, thus decreasing our snow total.   Well, the morning run from both the GFS and NAM both call for all snow and run something more than 5 inches.  OK, now the reason why I may be jumping the shark with Colonel Klink. 

12Z NAM called for over 4 inches of snow

The storm coming has some similarities to the one  a few days ago in that we have a southern and northern stream somewhat in sync.  The southern system though is farther south and it is driving the warmer air farther north.  Graphically, almost every model almost every run since last Wednesday has put the 500mb to 100omb thickness line south of the area, but close at times. Yet, numerically, the past several days both the GFS and NAM were insisting on some snow followed by rain and then closing with snow.  But, the 12Z run of both models both kept Louisville as all snow and both came in with an excess of 5 inches.  Now, the 18Z NAM is backing off with just under 3 inches.  I’ve been thinking all along that we would get all snow but the rain/snow line will be close…say around E’town and that’s not far from Louisville. 

18Z NAM Snow backed off to about 3 inches

So, I say the same thing I’ve said all along. Plan on snow beginning after midnight early Tuesday morning and continuing with perhaps 3-4 inches.  Then, things should back off but then pick up again lightly for Tuesday night into the first part of Wednesday as the northern system behaves more as an upper low to the parent southern low; again very similar to last week.  I would think that this secondary guy may bring an additional inch or so.  An obvious fly in the ointment would be if that rain/snow line drifts just a shade farther north.  The earth is 25, 000 miles around and so a difference of just 30 miles is a small fraction of the world’s surface but is a huge difference regarding snow totals.  If we do in fact get a little rain between periods of snow.  Not only will Colonel Klink have egg on his face but also the driving conditions will be more difficult as icing may become an issue. 

Chuck Knows Snow, but he's not tellin'

The other potential problem with a 5-6 inch snow would be in the event we stay all snow but there are big thunderstorms along the Gulf Coast, that may serve to limit some of the moisture coming up from the South.  And you know what?  The  Storm Prediction Center does indeed call for possible thunderstorms from East Texas to south Mississippi through Tuesday morning.  So, it’s not that far fetched.  They don’t have a severe risk but I’m telling you, some decent storms are possible and I would have concern that it messes up our snow potential even if the rain snow line behaves itself and stays south.  Now, if those storms don’t materialize (the probably will to some degree) and we do stay all snow, then maybe we’d get more than 5 inches…but I doubt that will happen.  The other issue is temperatures.  I’ve seen some national forecasts call for highs above freezing on Friday through the weekend.  I don’t get it.  Well, I suppose that they are coming around and have lowered that high on Friday to 32 but they have teens for Friday morning then mid 30’s for highs through the weekend. I still don’t get it.  I just don’t see how we get above freezing through Sunday.  And, I’ll tell you what…the Wednesday winds should have backed off by Friday morning and if we get clearing for that night..even partial clearing…it will be colder than the teens.

Regardless, its still a very difficult forecast and there will be great differences in snow totals between the southern part of Kentuckiana and the northern part.  Somewhere in between is the rain snow line and to say for certain exactly where it will be is above my pay grade and I believe above that of any human….except maybe Chuck Heston and he’s not tellin’.

Confederate Flag Not What You May Think
January 26, 2010

There were numerous Confederate Battle Flags, not just the Stars and Bars

On This Date in History: For the past 30 years or so, during the political season a certain topic seems to come up.  In particular, whenever there is an election in South Carolina, it seems as if the old flag controversy has raises its head again. Thing is, the flag that is in question was not the real flag or at least not the one adopted by the Confederate Congress.  There are various claims regarding the Confederate flag history, with at list one source suggesting the Confederate Congress neglected to officially pass a flag act.  Nevertheless, there is not much dispute that the original flag looked the one above with 7 stars for the first seven Confederate states. But commanders on the battlefield complained that it looked like the Union’s Stars and Stripes and it was difficult to determine friend from foe at distances. They changed it a couple of times by putting what would be a square “stars and bars” shape in the corner of a white field and then the same design only with a red vertical bar on the right end.  It was suggested that commanders in the field adopt their own battle flag.   However, some histories suggest that in fact, there were different flags adoped officially during the days of the Confederacy.  None of them though feature the familiar rectangular flag.  The original flag did not come into existence until March 1861 and on this date in 1861, the state of Louisiana seceded from the union, adding what would be the 6th star to the soon to be adopted flag.

Army of Northern Virginia Flag was square, not rectangular

The Army of Northern Virginia had used the common “stars and bars” for quite some time though it was a square, not rectangular flag. In fact, the proper name of the flag is the flag of the Army of Northern Virginia. I suppose since that was the army of Robert E. Lee and is so prominent in remedial history and because it was associated with arguably the South’s best or at least best known general, it became dominant in lore.  If you wanted to find a retangular flag with the stars and bars, you would have to head to the high seas.  See, the Confederate navy had a couple of flags. One was a square blue field with a circle of 7 stars. Then it was a flag similar to the Army of Northern Virginia flag except it featured a different shade of blue and it was rectangular and not the square used by General Lee’s army. The flag over time ended up as what is now thought to be the Confederate flag, or the “stars and bars.”  It has the design and color of the Army of Northern Virginia, but the shape of the second naval flag.  However, by the middle years of the war, the success of Lee’s army became apparent and several armies of the south changed their battle flags to look like that of the Army of Northern Virginia.    But, again, it was supposed to be square.  The Army of Tennessee though ended up with a rectangular flag not by design, but mistake.  A square was ordered but a rectangle was delivered.

1896 Frank Leslie depiction of the capture of a Confederate Flag in 1862; notice it is NOT the Stars and Bars

So, one can only conclude that the flag that is the center of controversy was not really the flag of the Confederacy but instead was the battle flag of Robert E. Lee’s army which over the course of the war was adopted by other armies in some form.   Depending on which battle at which time of a re-enactment,  there are probably many movies out there that are inaccurate regarding the flag, though is not surprising considering how much of history hollywood misrepresents.  In many battles portrayed on film, a completely different flag was really used and the one used that is most similar was  more often a square not a rectangle. The flag has 13 stars but there were really only 11 states in the Confederacy. They added the other two to try and claim Kentucky and Missouri but claims and truth are often at odds because both “border states” remained with the nation as the Kentucky legislature even invited the Union to send troops to fend off invading rebels.  This is how US Grant ends up with early victories in the western part of the state and how the Union Army of the Ohio came to be based in Louisville. And finally, ironically, the Confederate Congress adopted the flag design above specifically because it did resemble the Stars and Stripes which was the exact reason why military leaders found the flag worthless on the battlefield.  That would not be the first time that a Congress and military butted heads.   I suspect that the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia became the de-facto Confederate Flag in popular culture came about due to its use in D.W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation, which itself was an abhorent obfuscation of history. 

Photo of Fort Sumter After Confederate Occupation; Note the Flag is NOT the Stars and Bars

So, don’t believe the hype. The flag that has become such a controversial symbol, was not in wide use  until after the war.  I think that the number of flags used is more symbolic of disorder in the Confederacy and they had more immediate concerns than a flag.    As for the controversy regarding the display of the flag, it’s really kinda silly.  I mean the Confederacy is gone and was never recognized by the United States or almost anyone else.  Some say its just represents heritage.  Heritage of what?  Secession?  Oh..what a great thing to remember.  Then there are those who say it represents slavery.  It seems a bit far fetched to me but, if that is what some think, then so be it.  I suppose one might say that since it was the battle flag used by the side that supported slavery, then..well..okay.  But, in my mind, the flag has no business any place except maybe a museum.  The reason is that it was a battle flag.  It’s use was intended to aid the members of those in arms against the Union.  To me, it represents armed insurrection against the nation.    That is not a heritage I think should be celebrated.

6 Z GFS calls for 4-6 inches of snow Friday

12Z NAM calls for No Snow

Weather Bottom Line:  Monday night about midnight it was still around 35 degrees.  That meant that all precipitation that fell was melting, leaving wet roads.    As the overnight wore on, by 5 am we dropped below freezing.   We got between a quarter and a half inch of snow on the ground but, more importantly, those wet roads froze making for a difficult morning drive.  If we get above freezing on Tuesday, it won’t be by much.  We will get a break on Wednesday with highs near 40 or maybe a couple of degrees higher. Then comes our storm system.  Right now, the only apparent continuity in the modeling data is that the critical thickness lines will be down to about the southern Tennesee border.  That should be far enough away to limit the potential for ice, though I wouldnt totally rule it out at  this time.   The biggest contradiction comes in the moisture.  The NAM has the low tracking so far south that the precip line is south of Louisville and it calls for no snow at all.  The other models are more bullish to varying degrees. The long range models want to dump a fairly significant amount of snow on our area with the Canadian model even looking suspiciously like some decent ice early on.  I would tend to think that the NAM is wrong in saying no snow at all but beyond that, the data is just too muddled and the the critical thickness lines so close to the area that any minor variation  can cause an enormous difference in the type of precipitation and the degree of that precipitation.  At this point, I would plan on a potential winter storm for the last part of the week that may create some travel issues.  Friday seems to be the day.  Then, look for a cold weekend.  I would not expect temperatures back above freezing until early next week.

Birth of A Nation of Lies-Baseball Follows Script?
February 8, 2009

Clemens Said the Steroids Were For His Wife

Clemens Said the Steroids Were For His Wife

Clemens Wife Before & After Steroids?

Clemens Wife Before & After Steroids?

Barry Early and Late in Career

Barry Early and Late in Career

Steroids and Baseball:

Last year, Roger Clemens took his turn in front of Congress regarding steroids. He said such memorable things such as he “misremembered” many things.  But, he claims he never took steroids.  He said he bought some for his wife.  So, he threw his wife under the bus.  His former trainer claims that he did give Clemens steroids.  Part of the testimony regarded large cysts on his backside, an apparent side effect to injecting steroids.  Clemens is under investigation for perjury.  Barry Bonds is facing charges that he lied

Canseco Says A-Rod Did Steroids And Hit on His Wife...at least he didn't Hit his wife, Jose

Canseco Says A-Rod Did Steroids And Hit on His Wife...at least he didn't Hit his wife, Jose

to a grand jury regarding his steroid use.  The trial is supposed to be coming up and the government apparently has tests from 2003 and prior to that they say are positive tests against Bonds.  There is also a secretly taped conversation between one of Bonds’ former associates and his trainer.  The trainer has gone to jail for refusing to testify but, this recorded conversation has him telling the jilted associate ways to avoid getting detected in tests.  It included stuff about cysts forming where injections are given.  Before we slam the jail door shut on Barry…he seems to have an ally in the courtroom.  The judge appears to be poised to disallow the drug tests prior to 2003 as well as the secret tape.  Now, we have a report from Sports Illustrated regarding Alex Rodriguez saying that he not only tested positive for steroids, but that one of the union leaders was tipping him and other players off as to when they would be tested so they could prepare in advance to avoid detection.  They say where there’s smoke there’s fire.  I’d say there is a towering inferno brewing.

Idiotic Scene From "Historic" Birth of a Nation

Idiotic Scene From "Historic" Birth of a Nation

On This Date in History: First, on an interesting note relating to baseball and Bonds as well as a recent post, I found out that Hank Aaron’s birthday was February 5.  The man he passed as the all time home run king, Babe Ruth, celebrated his birthday on February 6.  That’s kinda unusual.  Then, I got to thinking…which is dangerous…I had a post regarding the Great Baltimore Fire on Feb 7-8 1904.  Speculation is that it started from a carelessly tossed cigarette or cigar.  Now, Ruth would have just celebrated his 9th birthday and his father’s bar is located close by to where the fire started. I don’t think that Ruth had been sent away to St. Mary’s Orphanage when he was 9, so what about the possibility that the fire was started by the juvenile delinquent George Herman Ruth!

Griffith's KKK Saves The South from Reconstruction...Nonsense

Griffith's KKK Saves The South from Reconstruction...Nonsense

That would make a good story line for our feature of the day…Kentuckian David Wark Griffith.  He was born not far from Louisville in La Grange and became famous for the first full length feature film, Birth of a Nation.  The film opened on this date in 1915 and is widely regarded as historic and monumnetal and such.  I could never figure out why because it’s stupid and it’s biased and racist and inaccurate.  It’s not the content so much as the techniques that Griffith used and pioneered that gives the film its place in history.

Griffith was born in 1875 to an Ex-Confederate.  Now, much of the nation today thinks of Kentucky as being in the South.  But, when I moved here, I couldn’t believe I was moving so far north.  I thought I was in Yankeeland.  Kim Stevens is from Alabama and she married a guy from Louisville. Her family said that they thought they could accept that she was marrying a “Yankee.”  People who are really in the South don’t think of Kentucky as being in the South.   Oh…the anger I get from people about that.  I tell people to move to Jackson, Mississippi if they want to find out what the South is like.  I point out that about 25,000 served in the Confederacy from Kentucky while over 130,00o served in the Union.  I point out that Louisville was home to the

Griffith's KKK Saves The Ladies! More Foolishness

Griffith's KKK Saves The Ladies! More Foolishness

Army of the Ohio and 75,000 Union Troops who were invited into the state by the legislature in late 1861.  I point out that Louisville averages over 15 inches of snow a year and often gets below zero.  I point out that St. Louis is exactly 250 miles due west, was a major city in a border state yet no one calls them the South.  My thesis had to do with Loiusville’s true roots being with the North but that they purposely realigned themselves with the South for economic reasons after the war.  That’s where the myth of the Kentucky Colonel comes from.  Louisville had the only working railroad into the South after the war and wanted to capitalize economically for the rebuilding south and so they basically said, “why, we wuz with ya all the time boys!! Do business with us, not them Yankees!”  Never mind that Braxton Bragg came into the state with an Army of 45, 000 hoping to get Kentuckians to join the Confederate cause.  Kentuckians declined, leaving Bragg to refer to Kentuckians as a bunch of “shuffling middlemen.”  Now, there were no book burnings, but Kentuckians simply left out all references to the North when they wrote the history of the state, specifically the Memorial History of Louisville to 1896.  They had a whole section on the Southern Exposition but said not one word about the National Industrial Exposition that lasted twice as long.  They made no reference to a huge event that became national in scope in 1885 celebrating the birthday of US Grant.  It’s on Grant’s Tomb in the form of a plaque but is found nowhere (except my published article…Ohio Valley History Fall 2008… and thesis) because they wanted no one to find out about it.  It messed up their story.

Protesters Were Pretty Close To the Mark

Protesters Were Pretty Close To the Mark

Well, DW Griffith was part of the mythmaking when he made Birth of a Nation.  For the first month of its release, it was called The Clansmen and was a biased view of the Civil War and Reconstruction.  It portrayed African Americans in an awful light and as evil and bad.  It created the illusion of the Ku Klux Klan as some heroic figures.  Now, US Grant had crushed the Klan in the 1870’s.  But, not long after Griffith’s stupid movie, the Klan re-emerged to be a scurge on the land for decades to come.  There is little doubt that Griffith’s film helped sway public support toward the reborn group that became “anti” all sorts  of things, not just African Americans.  It’s an idiotic film.  It was censored in some cities and sparked riots in many northern cities.  The newly formed NAACP tried to have it banned.  Griffith did agree to cut out some particularly offensive scenes.  But, the film itself is largely historically a fraud and I suppose it set the stage for historic movies to come as most Hollywood historically based films are not accurate…don’t believe everything you see.

There are some interesting things about the film though was that Griffith began the idea of feature length films. He also was the first to make actors rehearse before shooting scenes, thus increasing the quality of the acting.  Griffith helped pioneer the use of zooms and close ups and panning camera shots. He also had breakthroughs in editing techniques that are still used today.  His work with the actors helped launch the big careers of people like Mary Pickford, Lionel Barrymore and Lillian Gish.  He later went on to form United Artists with Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks.  So, Griffith does have a place in film history….just don’t buy his work of propaganda and foolishness AS history…its nonsense.

Weather Bottom Line: Told you that things may change…I mean come on…we’re talking about weather a couple of weeks out and the accuracy of a 7 day forecast has some pretty good grains of salt to ingest after day 2 and they get bigger as you go toward day 7.  Anyway, data is suggesting that we are cooler with some light rain Sunday. Fine.  Then we warm up but data really doesn’t support highs toward 70 on Wednesday.  And the models are not all that enthused about severe weather here.  The good stuff coming together appears to be more down in the Ozarks back into North Texas.  But, I would rest too easy just yet.  Still  could be of some interest but the models just aren’t on board yet.  There may be a bit of climatology in the equations of the models causing a bit of a bias.  Now, nothing else has much changed.  We look like we have a consensus of us getting into pattern after that of being on the edge of the freezing line.  Nothing really scarey at this point but it does look like a pain to forecast and generally seasonally chilly conditions.  Going out toward the 20th, the GFS wants to dig down cold air with some snow.  But, thats a long way out and I wouldn’t bet the ranch on that.  But, its still winter..its bound to get cold again.  So, enjoy the milder air for the first few days of the week while you can.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 39 other followers