To make things worse than they are, Snow White decided to call LG&E on Monday morning…well wait…let’s back up. On Thanksgiving, I was taking Matt Milosevich to the airport. When I returned, the house was full of smoke and Snow White was all wound up. She had a little mishap on the stove. She tried to put it out with a clean towel that was folded neatly on the drier. Of course, it was my favorite towel and it went up in flames. She then threw a big pitcher of water on the fire and put it out…did I mention we have an electric stove? So, today, she called LG&E to see if it was okay to turn on the stove. The guy came by and said it was fine but then checked and found that we had a gas leak. Off went the gas and consequently, on my first Monday on the job hunt, I have no heat and no hot water which made a meeting I had interesting. Cold shower took on new meaning. We had to get a plumber out to fix it, which they did quite promptly but as of 9 pm on Monday night, there is still no heat as we wait for LG&E to return.
Tuesday will be another fine day. Oh, tempertures will rise maybe to the upper 50’s but rain will move in and it will continue through the night. We’ve got a storm system ejecting out of the southwest and will be picking up moisture from the Gulf. Now, we will be on the warm side of the system with the cold air will be well north. I betcha from say Southwest of Chicago, through the Windy City to Detroit they get a pretty decent snow and you will hear all about it on the nightly news. Meanwhile, we’ll get a whole mess of rain. The Hydrological Prediction Center suggests 2.5 to 3 inches of rain. I would think that most of the rain will begin midday on Tuesday and be generally done by the time you go to work on Wednesday. Maybe I’ll be lucky and be able to join you.
On This Date in History: This is a tale to calm your worries next time you think that Congress has just gone off the
deep end. At the outset of the Civil War, the Union Armies suffered numerous set backs. Remember at the first Battle of Bull Run, families went out to see the battle with picnic blankets only to see the Union Army routed and women and children were introduced to the horrors of modern warfare. Also, remember that President Lincoln was seen as an idiot. His cabinet even tried to make him a figurehead and run the country themselves only to have Lincoln gently rebuff them all. The rivals were not much of a team. So, Congress took action!!
On this date in 1861, Congress did what it does best which is form a committee. This one was called the Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War. They were going to oversee the war and oversee the administration. Two arguable assaults on the Constitution with the idea of a seperate Executive and Legislative Branch with the Executive as Commander In Chief of the military. This committee was filled with Radical Republicans and Abolitionists. They were pretty harsh regarding the failures of General George B. McClellan, whom Lincoln was patient to a point. They thought that Democrats who were generals like McClellan and George Meade were soft on slavery and had no business being in the army. They also were not enthused with the administration’s war aims.
Winning wasn’t enough. They thought that the abolition of slavery should have been a goal. Even after the President issued the Emancipation Proclamation, they still wanted the Democrats out of the ranks of General Officers and so its members did another tried and true schemes. They leaked secret testimony! This led to distrust and jealousy in the officer corps. While this committee did a decent job of uncovering fraud in government contracts, the overall lack of military expertise tended to be a burr under the saddle of Abraham Lincoln and otherwise muddle the war effort. Instead of lining up behind the President in a time of war, their meddling ways may possibly have cost the lives of soldiers in the field.
As for this committee, they didn’t like the loser Generals like McClellan which was fine. But, they also objected to the
Generals who won either. General Grant at the Battle of Vicksburg simply cut his lines of communications before he crossed the Mississippi River, moved south through Louisiana and then crossed back across the River before laying seige and eventually capturing Vicksburg. He didn’t want to hear from the members of Congress who were urging him not to take Vickburg. After taking the city, I’ve heard stories that said Grant wired back if he should give it back. Some members of Congress urged that Grant be sacked for cutting the lines. Later, some members of Congress urged that Grant be fired for his reported drunkeness. Lincoln stood his ground and simply said, “I can’t spare this man, he fights.”
So, never fear….anything Congress does today probably has not been done before and we’ve managed to survive in spite of them.