Chamblee54

The Last Night Of Judy Garland

Posted in History, Library of Congress by chamblee54 on June 21, 2018






“In march of 1969, Judy married her fifth husband, Mickey Devinko, better known as Mickey Deans, a gay night-club promoter. Judy had an unfortunate habit of marrying gay men. They lived together in a tiny mews house in Chelsea, London. The evening of Saturday June 21 1969, Judy and Mickey were watching a documentary, The Royal Family, on television, when they had an argument. Judy ran out the door screaming into the street, waking the neighbors.
Several versions of what happened next exist, but the fact remains that a phone call for Judy woke him at 10:40 the next morning, and she was not sleeping in the bed. He searched for her, only to find the bathroom door locked. After no response, he climbed outside to the bathroom window and entered to find Judy, sitting on the toilet. Rigor Mortis had set in. Judy Garland, 47, was dead.
The press was already aware of the news before the body could be removed. In an effort to prevent pictures being taken of the corpse, she was apparently draped over someone’s arm like a folded coat, covered with a blanket, and removed from the house with the photographers left none the wiser.
The day Judy died there was a tornado in Kansas…. in Saline County,KS, a rather large F3 tornado (injuring 60, but causing no deaths) did hit at 10:40 pm on June 21st, that would be 4:40 am, June 22nd, London time, the morning she died. I know the time of death has never been firmly established, but since Rigor Mortis had already set in, I think this tornado may very much be in the ballpark in terms of coinciding with time of death…. Other news articles suggest the tornado struck Salina “late at night” which could certainly also mean after midnight on June 22, or roughly 6:00 am London time…

The Toledo Blade for June 24th, also in an article located right next to a picture of Garland, in a write-up on the Salina tornado noted that “Late Saturday [June 21] and early Sunday [June 22, another batch of tornadoes struck in central Kansas.” So it seems the legend seems confirmed.”

The text for this story comes from Findadeath. You can spend hours at this site. This is a repost. Pictures are from The Library of Congress.






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The Kinks

Posted in GSU photo archive, History, Music by chamblee54 on June 20, 2018

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Dangerousminds brings the sad news that Pete Quaife, the original bass player for The Kinks , passed away yesterday. He was 66, and had been in dialysis for several years. Maybe it is time for Chamblee54 to do a post about The Kinks. This is a repost.

Battling brothers Ray and Dave Davies are the core of The Kinks. (The name is pronounced like the american Davis, as though the e did not exist). Ray was the vocalist, writer, and rhythm guitar player. Dave was the lead guitarist, and sparring partner for his brother. The fisticuffs were not restricted to the brothers. This led to the band being barred from performing in the United States between 1965 and 1969. The sixties happened anyway.

There were several hits in the early days, most notably “You really got me”. (This later became a signature tune for Van Halen). The band had numerous adventures, but never became the superstars that other British bands of that era did. Ray Davies developed as a songwriter, with many witty tunes, full of social commentary and britishness.(spell check suggestion:brutishness)

In the seventies The Kinks kept trooping on. They did an album called Preservation Act, which became the basis of a theatrical presentation. The next album was called Soap Opera, with a theater like production. This is where PG got to see The Kinks.

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It was sometime in the spring of 1975, at the Atlanta Municipal Auditorium. Elvin Bishop was the opening act. The Kinks had started when PG arrived, buying a $4.00 balcony seat. Alex Cooley was in the box office counting money, and broke open a roll of quarters to make change for a five.

The band was playing “Celluloid Heroes” when PG walked into the auditorium. There was no one on the door checking tickets, so PG walked onto the floor and found an empty seat on the 13th row. The next number was “Lola”.

Ray Davies introduced the song by saying
” If you are a man, sing LO. If you are a woman, sing LA. If you are not sure, clap your hands”. The next number was about demon alcohol. There were lights shining on the crowd during this number, as Ray Davies asked if there were any sinners in the audience. The band did several more songs, ending the first half of the evening with “You really got me”. Dave Davies got some spotlight time with a rave up intro to this number.
The second part of the show was a theatrical presentation of “Soap Opera”. The band wore rainbow colored wigs, and stood at the back of the stage while Ray Davies told the tale. “Soap Opera” was about a rock star who traded places with Norman, who lived a boring life. The flat Norman lived in has pictures of ducks on the wall, which drove Ray/Norman to scream
“I can’t stand those f*****g ducks”. This led into a rocking ditty called, predictably, “Ducks on the Wall”.
As the show dragged on, Ray/Norman was embarrassed by the mess he was in.
“You can’t say that in front of The Kinks, they are my band, and that is my audience.” The audience lights were turned on again, and the band played a medley of hits from 1964.
Finally, the real Norman came back to reclaim his wife, put the ducks back on the wall, and kick out The Kinks. The band gave up on theater before much longer, and were popular for the rest of the concert happy seventies. Ray Davies was the babydaddy for Chrissie Hynde . Eventually, the band quit performing, and continued to cash royalty checks.

Pictures are from the “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.

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History From The Stable

Posted in Book Reports, History, Library of Congress, War by chamblee54 on June 10, 2018

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The following is a repost. Pictures are from The Library of Congress.

PG read “Churchill, Hitler, and the unnecessary war” by Patrick Buchanan. It makes interesting points, and is luxuriously footnoted. This is not to say that PG believes all of it.

Part of the problem is Pat Buchanan. He is a former speechwriter for Richard Nixon, and a public nuisance since. He gave a hateful speech at the Republican Convention in 1992 which is known as the “Culture War” speech. This speech alienated many people, and helped elect Bill Clinton.

The book starts with the deal making before World War I. Germany was ruled by Kaiser Wilhelm, the grandson of Queen Victoria. He tried to arrange an alliance with Great Britain. Instead, Britain entered into a secret alliance with France. In 1914, Europe blundered into war. The conflict turned into a ghastly stalemate, which continued until 1918. The victorious French forced a vengeful peace on the Germans, setting the stage for the second world war.

Great Britain made many mistakes. They severed an alliance with Japan. They allowed Hitler to advance, then gave a guarantee to Poland that they would defend her in a war. This guarantee to Poland is the biggest blunder of all, according to Buchanan. It made war all but certain.

Eventually, Nazi Germany was defeated, but at a frightful cost. The millions of dead in the war produced an East Europe under Communist Rule for 50 years. The British Empire was a shadow of its former self. The United States came out of the war looking good, but much of Europe was destroyed, and ruled by Communists.

Winston Churchill does not look good. He is seen cheering the start of war in 1914. He makes numerous blunders, especially when encouraging the invasion of Gallipoli. Churchill was an inspiring leader in the second war, with an actor making speeches for him on the radio. Mr. Hitler, who read his own speeches, was also a charismatic leader.

As with all history, this book needs to be taken with a bit of skepticism. Tom Robbins makes a comparison of history to animal husbandry. A herd manager mixes bloodlines to create an improved breed. A historian takes “facts”, and mixes them to support an agenda. Both are usually up to their ankles in s**t.

After PG finished the Buchanan book, he started one by Deepak Chopra. The title was “Why is G-d Laughing?“. The first chapter tells the story of a famous comedian. He goes to the hospital when his father drops dead of a heart attack. The comedian cannot help but think of jokes. PG is going to return this to the library without reading any more.

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Happy Birthday Mr. Ginsberg

Posted in GSU photo archive, History, Poem by chamblee54 on June 3, 2018








This feature was originally intended to honor the arrival of a certain poet in 1926. June 3 is also the birthay of Jefferson Davis (1808), Josephine Baker (1906), Paulette Goddard (1910), Tony Curtis (1925), Allen Ginsberg (1926). People who met their maker on June 3 include Ozzie Nelson (1975), Billy Joe McAllister (1967), Ruhollah Khomeini (1989), Rue McClanahan (2010), Jack Kevorkian (2011), Muhammad Ali (2016). There is a synchronicity to the demise of Dr. Kervorkian.

Allen Ginsberg would be 92 today, if nature had not made other plans in 1997. The son of Louis and Naomi Ginsberg arrived, in Newark NJ, June 3,1926.

Allen Ginsberg had a part in many new age dramas, with a few musicals and comedies thrown in for good measure. Hippie, beatnik, gay, artist, peace promoter, Buddhist convert…these are a few of the labels. He became famous for being famous, well known to people who never read a word of his poems. Two of the more famous were howl and kaddish.

Howl became scandalous in 1956 when it was busted for obscenity. It is mild by today’s standards, but almost landed Mr. Ginsberg in prison. PG heard about howl in the early nineties, and looked high and low for a copy. He could not find one. Today on the internet, not only is the text widely available, there are recordings of Mr. Ginsberg reading his work. (Here is an updated version: howl 2011)

The original plan was to listen to Mr. Ginsberg read while editing photos. PG was going to listen to the words, and think of something to say while listening to the bard. About the seventeenth time Mr. Ginsberg shouted “Moloch”, the plan began to fall apart.

The next poem was Kaddish. This is about Naomi Ginsberg, the mother of the poet, who evidently had some issues. This was tough for PG to listen to. The other night, PG had a disturbing dream about his own late mother. In this dream, a fearsome shouter came in wearing a black suit, which meant that he intended to do some scary shouting. PG went into another room, where his recently deceased mother was laying on a table.

1956 was the year of the obscenity trial for howl. This took place on the other side of america, from the Brookhaven where PG was two years old. This was the year when his brother was born, the year when the Georgia legislature voted in a new flag, for whatever reason. In 1955, President Eisenhower had a heart attack. Many wondered if it was a good idea to have Richard Nixon as the vice president.

Finally, PG could stand no more of that voice. The player was turned off, the files stored on an external hard drive, never to be heard again. PG just is not a poetry person. This is a repost, with pictures from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.






Marilyn Truther

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Quotes, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on May 31, 2018


Marilyn Monroe was photographed reading Ulysses, the famously difficult book by James Joyce. 63 years later, a man posted the picture on twitter, while promoting a study course on Ulysses. If Marilyn read it, then you can too! PG said something uncooperative, and a brief twitter fight broke out. Since the Ulysses dude, and his tweeting buddy, did not give permission, they will not be quoted in this discussion. They will be known as @01, and @02.

Comment by @01
@chamblee54 It was a joke, at one time, to give models a book to pose with. It was considered funny to give them a difficult book like “Ulysses”
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@chamblee54 Who needs to show a citation? I may be wrong. I asked Mr. Google, and found this. …
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@chamblee54 According to photographer, she did not read it from start to finish. A more accurate answer is that she read parts of it Story by photographer should not be taken as unchallenged truth, but it is all we have I should have researched this before i spoke. Did you?
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@chamblee54 I had read that about other models. I also read numerous quotes, attributed to Marilyn, that proved to be phony. Photography is a medium open to manipulation, and creation of fantasy. Just because you see a picture, that does not mean it happened. I made a mistake when posting
@chamblee54 Eve Arnold… a woman … took that picture. How do we know Marilyn told the truth? Maybe Marilyn was just trying to make a good impression on the lady. Would Marilyn have said the same thing if the photographer was a man?
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Comment by @01
@chamblee54 I would like to use these tweets in a blog post I would like your permission to do so If I do not have your permission, I can rely on my own text

PG disputed that Marilyn Monroe had read Ulysses, and will never know for sure either way. He was not the first person to wonder about this. “Richard Brown, a Professor of Modern Literature at the University of Leeds with a special interest in James Joyce, was intrigued by Eve Arnold’s photos of Marilyn. Curious to know if Marilyn was indeed reading Joyce’s novel or if she was merely posing for the photo, Brown wrote Arnold a letter, which she replied on 20 July 1993. Unfortunately, I don’t have Arnold’s complete letter to show you … In any case, the excerpt from Arnold’s letter is interesting as she was telling Brown exactly what he wanted to know”:

“We worked on a beach on Long Island. She was visiting Norman Rosten the poet…. I asked her what she was reading when I went to pick her up (I was trying to get an idea of how she spent her time). She said she kept Ulysses in her car and had been reading it for a long time. She said she loved the sound of it and would read it aloud to herself to try to make sense of it — but she found it hard going. She couldn’t read it consecutively. When we stopped at a local playground to photograph she got out the book and started to read while I loaded the film. So, of course, I photographed her. It was always a collaborative effort of photographer and subject where she was concerned — but almost more her input.” “Quoted in Richard Brown, “Marilyn Monroe Reading Ulysses: Goddess or Postcultural Cyborg?”, in R. B. Kershner (Ed), Joyce and Popular Culture, p. 174.”

“Monroe is reading the 1934 Random House edition, with the dust jacket removed. This is the edition that was famously set from a pirate version containing numerous errors. This defect notwithstanding, the dust-jacket artwork and typographic design by Ernst Reichl constitute one of the great works in the history of book design.”

What does this say about a screen icon who died in 1962? Maybe she was smarter than your typical dumb blonde. Maybe not. Marilyn had an instinct for the camera, and looking good on the screen brought joy to millions of fans. Is this post mortem resurrection, as an intellectual philosopher, merely another fantasy concocted by well meaning fans? Pictures never lie, and there is a picture of Marilyn, reading Ulysses, with a serious look on her pretty face. Of course it is real! A fantasy involving Norma Jean Baker Marilyn Monroe? How absurd! As long as the merchandise is paid for, and the instagrammers inspired, should we even care?

The cult of Marilyn has shown up on chamblee54 before. “Someone told me that Marilyn Monroe once remarked that she enjoyed reading poetry “because it saves time.” I like this quotation so much that I’ve never dared to confirm it; I’d feel disenchanted to learn it was bogus.” This search for authenticity led to a forum called Data Lounge… “… get your fix of gay gossip, news and pointless bitchery.” The “Marilyn: Smart or Stupid” debate rages through 200 comments, reaching a peak at comment 196. “Yes MM said every one of those quotes by herself! She is intelligent so don’t hate! But I’m worried for her, cause She’s my main spirit guide and Saviour and she recently commanded me to share this message! … Recently Marilyn contacted me from the spirit world!!! Being a medium, I’m used to contact with spirits, but Marilyn told me to tell this message to everyone, since she could only get in touch with only me at the moment! (She’s trying hard, she’s been contacting me frequently lately, so it must be really important.)”

In 2014, a facebook notice appeared. It was promoting a blog post by known idiot Matt Walsh. “If you can’t accept me at my worst, then you don’t deserve me at my best.”… “the original quote is from Marilyn Monroe. It’s even more vapid and nauseating when taken in its full context: “I’m selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.” Out of all the profundities ever uttered, what does it say about our society that THIS is the quote we’ve decided to take to heart?” It is generally accepted that Marilyn did not say that. The top debunker is now a malware distributor, and not available for viewing. Somehow, that seems appropriate.

Pictures today are from the Library of Congress. “Listening to speeches at mass meeting of Works Progress Administration (WPA) workers protesting congressional cut of relief appropriations. San Francisco, California.” Photographer: Dorothea Lange February 1939

I Sing The Body Electric

Posted in History, Poem by chamblee54 on May 31, 2018

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1
I sing the body electric,
The armies of those I love engirth me and I engirth them,
They will not let me off till I go with them, respond to them,
And discorrupt them, and charge them full with the charge of the soul.

Was it doubted that those who corrupt their own bodies conceal themselves?
And if those who defile the living are as bad as they who defile the dead?
And if the body does not do fully as much as the soul?
And if the body were not the soul, what is the soul?
2
The love of the body of man or woman balks account,
the body itself balks account,
That of the male is perfect, and that of the female is perfect.

The expression of the face balks account,
But the expression of a well-made man appears not only in his face,
It is in his limbs and joints also, it is curiously in the joints of his hips and wrists,
It is in his walk, the carriage of his neck, the flex of his waist and knees,
dress does not hide him,
The strong sweet quality he has strikes through the cotton and broadcloth,
To see him pass conveys as much as the best poem, perhaps more,
You linger to see his back, and the back of his neck and shoulder-side.

The sprawl and fulness of babes, the bosoms and heads of women,
the folds of their dress, their style as we pass in the street,
the contour of their shape downwards,
The swimmer naked in the swimming-bath, seen as he swims through
the transparent green-shine, or lies with his face up and rolls
silently to and from the heave of the water,
The bending forward and backward of rowers in row-boats,
the horse-man in his saddle,
Girls, mothers, house-keepers, in all their performances,
The group of laborers seated at noon-time with their open dinner-kettles,
and their wives waiting,
The female soothing a child, the farmer’s daughter in the garden or cow-yard,
The young fellow hosing corn, the sleigh-driver driving his six horses
through the crowd,
The wrestle of wrestlers, two apprentice-boys, quite grown, lusty,
good-natured, native-born, out on the vacant lot at sundown after work,
The coats and caps thrown down, the embrace of love and resistance,
The upper-hold and under-hold, the hair rumpled over and blinding the eyes;
The march of firemen in their own costumes, the play of masculine muscle
through clean-setting trowsers and waist-straps,
The slow return from the fire, the pause when the bell strikes suddenly again,
and the listening on the alert,
The natural, perfect, varied attitudes, the bent head, the curv’d neck
and the counting;
Such-like I love—I loosen myself, pass freely, am at the mother’s breast
with the little child,
Swim with the swimmers, wrestle with wrestlers, march in line
with the firemen, and pause, listen, count.
3
I knew a man, a common farmer, the father of five sons,
And in them the fathers of sons, and in them the fathers of sons.
This man was a wonderful vigor, calmness, beauty of person,
The shape of his head, the pale yellow and white of his hair and beard,
the immeasurable meaning of his black eyes,
the richness and breadth of his manners,
These I used to go and visit him to see, he was wise also,
He was six feet tall, he was over eighty years old, his sons were massive,
clean, bearded, tan-faced, handsome,
They and his daughters loved him, all who saw him loved him,
They did not love him by allowance, they loved him with personal love,
He drank water only, the blood show’d like scarlet
through the clear-brown skin of his face,
He was a frequent gunner and fisher, he sail’d his boat himself,
he had a fine one presented to him by a ship-joiner,
he had fowling-pieces presented to him by men that loved him,
When he went with his five sons and many grand-sons to hunt or fish,
you would pick him out as the most beautiful and vigorous of the gang,
You would wish long and long to be with him, you would wish to sit by him
in the boat that you and he might touch each other.

4
I have perceiv’d that to be with those I like is enough,
To stop in company with the rest at evening is enough,
To be surrounded by beautiful, curious, breathing, laughing flesh is enough,
To pass among them or touch any one, or rest my arm ever so lightly
round his or her neck for a moment, what is this then?
I do not ask any more delight, I swim in it as in a sea.

There is something in staying close to men and women and looking on them,
and in the contact and odor of them, that pleases the soul well,
All things please the soul, but these please the soul well.

5
This is the female form,
A divine nimbus exhales from it from head to foot,
It attracts with fierce undeniable attraction,
I am drawn by its breath as if I were no more than a helpless vapor,
all falls aside but myself and it,
Books, art, religion, time, the visible and solid earth,
and what was expected of heaven or fear’d of hell, are now consumed,
Mad filaments, ungovernable shoots play out of it,
the response likewise ungovernable,
Hair, bosom, hips, bend of legs, negligent falling hands all diffused,
mine too diffused,
Ebb stung by the flow and flow stung by the ebb, love-flesh swelling
and deliciously aching,
Limitless limpid jets of love hot and enormous, quivering jelly of love,
white-blow and delirious juice,
Bridegroom night of love working surely and softly into the prostrate dawn,
Undulating into the willing and yielding day,
Lost in the cleave of the clasping and sweet-flesh’d day.

This the nucleus—after the child is born of woman, man is born of woman,
This the bath of birth, this the merge of small and large, and the outlet again.

Be not ashamed women, your privilege encloses the rest,
and is the exit of the rest,
You are the gates of the body, and you are the gates of the soul.

The female contains all qualities and tempers them,
She is in her place and moves with perfect balance,
She is all things duly veil’d, she is both passive and active,
She is to conceive daughters as well as sons, and sons as well as daughters.

As I see my soul reflected in Nature,
As I see through a mist, One with inexpressible completeness,
sanity, beauty,
See the bent head and arms folded over the breast, the Female I see.

6
The male is not less the soul nor more, he too is in his place,
He too is all qualities, he is action and power,
The flush of the known universe is in him,
Scorn becomes him well, and appetite and defiance become him well,
The wildest largest passions, bliss that is utmost, sorrow that is utmost
become him well, pride is for him,
The full-spread pride of man is calming and excellent to the soul,
Knowledge becomes him, he likes it always, he brings every thing
to the test of himself,
Whatever the survey, whatever the sea and the sail
he strikes soundings at last only here,
(Where else does he strike soundings except here?)

The man’s body is sacred and the woman’s body is sacred,
No matter who it is, it is sacred—is it the meanest one in the laborers’ gang?
Is it one of the dull-faced immigrants just landed on the wharf?
Each belongs here or anywhere just as much as the well-off, just as much as you,
Each has his or her place in the procession.

(All is a procession,
The universe is a procession with measured and perfect motion.)

Do you know so much yourself that you call the meanest ignorant?
Do you suppose you have a right to a good sight,
and he or she has no right to a sight?
Do you think matter has cohered together from its diffuse float,
and the soil is on the surface, and water runs and vegetation sprouts,
For you only, and not for him and her?

7
A man’s body at auction,
(For before the war I often go to the slave-mart and watch the sale,)
I help the auctioneer, the sloven does not half know his business.

Gentlemen look on this wonder,
Whatever the bids of the bidders they cannot be high enough for it,
For it the globe lay preparing quintillions of years without one animal or plant,
For it the revolving cycles truly and steadily roll’d.

In this head the all-baffling brain,
In it and below it the makings of heroes.

Examine these limbs, red, black, or white, they are cunning in tendon and nerve,
They shall be stript that you may see them.

Exquisite senses, life-lit eyes, pluck, volition,
Flakes of breast-muscle, pliant backbone and neck, flesh not flabby,
good-sized arms and legs,
And wonders within there yet.

Within there runs blood,
The same old blood! the same red-running blood!
There swells and jets a heart, there all passions, desires, reachings, aspirations,

(Do you think they are not there because they are not express’d
in parlors and lecture-rooms?)

This is not only one man, this the father of those who shall be fathers
in their turns,
In him the start of populous states and rich republics,
Of him countless immortal lives with countless embodiments and enjoyments.

How do you know who shall come from the offspring of his offspring
through the centuries?
(Who might you find you have come from yourself,
if you could trace back through the centuries?)

8
A woman’s body at auction,
She too is not only herself, she is the teeming mother of mothers,
She is the bearer of them that shall grow and be mates to the mothers.

Have you ever loved the body of a woman?
Have you ever loved the body of a man?
Do you not see that these are exactly the same to all in all nations
and times all over the earth?

If anything is sacred the human body is sacred,
And the glory and sweet of a man is the token of manhood untainted,
And in man or woman a clean, strong, firm-fibred body, is more beautiful
than the most beautiful face.

Have you seen the fool that corrupted his own live body?
or the fool that corrupted her own live body?
For they do not conceal themselves, and cannot conceal themselves.

9
O my body! I dare not desert the likes of you in other men and women,
nor the likes of the parts of you,
I believe the likes of you are to stand or fall with the likes of the soul,
(and that they are the soul,)
I believe the likes of you shall stand or fall with my poems,
and that they are my poems,
Man’s, woman’s, child, youth’s, wife’s, husband’s, mother’s, father’s,
young man’s, young woman’s poems,
Head, neck, hair, ears, drop and tympan of the ears,
Eyes, eye-fringes, iris of the eye, eyebrows, and the waking
or sleeping of the lids,
Mouth, tongue, lips, teeth, roof of the mouth, jaws, and the jaw-hinges,
Nose, nostrils of the nose, and the partition,
Cheeks, temples, forehead, chin, throat, back of the neck, neck-slue,
Strong shoulders, manly beard, scapula, hind-shoulders,
and the ample side-round of the chest,
Upper-arm, armpit, elbow-socket, lower-arm, arm-sinews, arm-bones,
Wrist and wrist-joints, hand, palm, knuckles, thumb, forefinger,
finger-joints, finger-nails,
Broad breast-front, curling hair of the breast, breast-bone, breast-side,
Ribs, belly, backbone, joints of the backbone,
Hips, hip-sockets, hip-strength, inward and outward round,
man-balls, man-root,
Strong set of thighs, well carrying the trunk above,
Leg-fibres, knee, knee-pan, upper-leg, under-leg,
Ankles, instep, foot-ball, toes, toe-joints, the heel;
All attitudes, all the shapeliness, all the belongings of my or your body
or of any one’s body, male or female,
The lung-sponges, the stomach-sac, the bowels sweet and clean,
The brain in its folds inside the skull-frame,
Sympathies, heart-valves, palate-valves, sexuality, maternity,
Womanhood, and all that is a woman, and the man that comes from woman,
The womb, the teats, nipples, breast-milk, tears, laughter, weeping,
love-looks, love-perturbations and risings,
The voice, articulation, language, whispering, shouting aloud,
Food, drink, pulse, digestion, sweat, sleep, walking, swimming,
Poise on the hips, leaping, reclining, embracing, arm-curving and tightening,
The continual changes of the flex of the mouth, and around the eyes,
The skin, the sunburnt shade, freckles, hair,
The curious sympathy one feels when feeling with the hand
the naked meat of the body,
The circling rivers the breath, and breathing it in and out,
The beauty of the waist, and thence of the hips,
and thence downward toward the knees,
The thin red jellies within you or within me, the bones and the marrow
in the bones,
The exquisite realization of health;

O I say these are not the parts and poems of the body only, but of the soul,
O I say now these are the soul!

Text for this adventure is from the Project Gutenberg.
The text was reformatted by Chamblee54.
“I sing the Body Electric” was written by Walt Whitman.
An audio version of this poem is available from Librivox.
Reposted May 31,2018, Walt Whitman’s 199th Birthday.
Pictures from The Library of Congress.

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May 30

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Race, Religion by chamblee54 on May 30, 2018

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This blog tries to publish something everyday. This blog has a huge archive. Today, we are going to try something. We have three posts, all of which were posted on May 30. (2009, 2014, 2015) Text will be edited, out of concern for the reader’s tolerance of gratuitous ranting. Pictures are from The Library of Congress, and are better than the text. The topics for discussion are race and religion. Some things never go out of style.

PG found a thingie on the internet today. It is a list of twenty reasons why the person at BEattitude is no longer a Jesus Worshiper. It has 331 comments. Does anyone the time them all? (The link does not work in 2018) The man is in what you might call phase one post Jesus. He sees things in terms of the Christian Experience. The further you get from Jesus Worship, the more you see that Jesus is not the only game in town. The free for all going on in the comments thread is much more pleasant in digital form. In person, you would have 300 people interrupting and screaming at each other. Some think that the louder you talk, the more truth your words have.

Jesus is a touchy subject for many people. Many people have been verbally assaulted, in the name of spreading salvation. The fact that you don’t agree with these ideas does not stop people from feeling obligated to tell you about one more time. It serves to create ill will for Jesus. It does not help when this Jesus-fix is delivered as a ceremonial part of a government meeting.

Once, a man saw his child get excited when there was a prayer on TV. The kid said that the prayer meant the cartoons would start soon. There was a religious program, before the cartoons. The prayer was at the end of the show, meaning the cartoons were about to start. That is about what prayers before a public event are worth. Prayer is reduced to a meaningless gesture, when used in this manner. This does not speak well for the custom of prayer.

Jesus reportedly said this. “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

Whenever you hear the word G-d, the word believe is not far behind. The two seem to go together. PG wonders if belief is really the proper way to “know” G-d. Remember, the middle three letters of beLIEve is LIE. The symbolism of the cross is rather distasteful. A cross was a method of capital punishment, and a rather gruesome method at that. If Jesus were to be offed in prison today, would future generations worship a syringe?

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A popular link on facebook these days is to an article in Slate magazine, Why Do Millennials Not Understand Racism? It is written by Jamelle Bouie, and is based on the MTV Survey on Millenials and Race. Mr. Bouie does not like the results. One question might be why he is paying attention. The results are broken down in two groups, white and POC. The study was conducted in English. The respondents were 14-24 years old, with the under 18 crowd needing parental permission. Only people who watch MTV were interviewed. The questionnaire is not included in the report. The study does not go into the family income, or level of education in the family. The only breakdown is white vs. POC.

Some questions were asked about “microaggressions” … “brief and commonplace actions or words that are subtle examples of bias. Microaggressions can be intentional or unintentional, and often communicate negative feelings towards people of color.” POC report having more problems with microaggressions than white people. One possible reason for this is the fact many white people have never heard of microaggressions.The use of microaggression is one reason for using English only.

Mr. Bouie makes a few broad comments. Remember, he is talking about a group of MTV watchers. “More jarring is the 48 percent of white millennials who say discrimination against whites is as big a problem as discrimination against racial minorities. … But while this reaction doesn’t seem to have a basis in reality, it makes perfect sense given what millennials writ large believe about racism.” Maybe this is white privilege. Many white people are not sensitive to being discriminated against. What is a microaggression to one person is a rude comment (or misunderstood look) to another.

Maybe this is another case of the younger generation being misunderstood by the old fogeys. The study makes the shaky claim that “The majority of millennials believe that their generation is post-racial.” Perhaps … and this just might be a good thing … there are people coming along who are more interested in solving problems, than in worrying whether the problem affects white people more than POC. Maybe, just maybe, the divide and conquer tactics of the ruling class are being seen as the foolish distractions that they are. Those who enjoy screaming about racism could find themselves obsolete in a few years. This might not be such a bad thing.

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Amazing Grace

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Music by chamblee54 on May 25, 2018

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This story was originally posted by Gartalker and chamblee54. Pictures are from The Library of Congress. It is probably fiction.
Recently I was asked by a funeral director to play my bagpipes at a graveside service for a homeless man. He had no family or friends, so the service was to be at a pauper’s cemetery in the Kentucky back-country.

As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost; and being a typical man I didn’t stop for directions. I finally arrived an hour late and saw the funeral guy had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight.There were only the diggers and crew left and they were eating lunch.

I felt badly and apologized to the men for being late. I went to the side of the grave and looked down and the vault lid was already in place. I didn’t know what else to do, so I started to play.
The workers put down their lunches and began to gather around. I played out my heart and soul for this man with no family and friends. I played like I’ve never played before for this homeless man.

And as I played ‘Amazing Grace,’ the workers began to weep. They wept, I wept, and we all wept together. When I finished I packed up my bagpipes and started for my car. Though my head hung low, my heart was full.

As I was opening the door to my car, I heard one of the worker say, “Sweet Mother of Jesus, I never seen nothing like that before and I’ve been putting in septic tanks for twenty years.”

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Bob Dylan’s Birthday

Posted in GSU photo archive, History, Music by chamblee54 on May 24, 2018









This is a repost. Pictures are from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”. Today is Bob Dylan’s seventy seventh birthday. This chamblee 54 birthday tribute is composed primarily of three previously published pieces of work.

This compendium was assembled in 2016. On David Bowie’s in 2016, PG created a computer playlist, and assembled a few blog posts into a birthday celebration. Three days later, David Bowie was dead. PG decided to do the same thing to Bob Dylan on his birthday. Instead of dying, Bob Dylan won the Nobel prize. A similar effort on RuPaul’s birthday had no effect on the performer.

It was a late may morning in Atlanta GA, and a slack blogger was searching his archives. Yes, Issac Asinov never got writers block, and when he wasn’t going to the bathroom he was typing, but that is a lifestyle choice. Easy writing makes tough reading. So, anyway, in the may archive for 2011 there was a post about Bob Dylan’s seventieth birthday. People were taking bets on whether he would make it to thirty, and here he is at seventy seven.

Hibbing MN is a cold place. At least it can claim to be the birthplace of Robert Allen Zimmerman. That’s Allen ,with an e, and double L, just like hell. The original initials were RAZ, which might be a good trivia question, or, with a silent W in front, radio station call letters. The problem is, he legally changed his name to Bob Dylan, with no known middle name. Those initial are BD.

On May 24, 1941, the curly haired wonder boi arrived. The world was a different place. Europe was in flames, and eyeing the young men of America as fresh cannon fodder. This was twelve years, eleven months, and eighteen days before PG graced the planet. A twelve year old in Hibbing MN would have no reason to think of a newborn baby in Atlanta GA.

These days, not everyone knows who Bob Dylan is. Auto tuned automated canned music is the next big thing. If auto tune had been around in 1963, we would never had known how badly Mr. Dylan sings. In an age where rappers pay ghost writers to compose their tweets, being able to write songs is not valued. There is just no telling. And so it goes.
A.J. Weberman has made a life out of going through Bob Dylan’s garbage. He wrote a book, “The Devil and Bob Dylan”.
“THIS BOOK CHALLENGES ALL PREVIOUS CONVENTIONAL THINKING ABOUT BOB DYLAN. DYLAN IS JUST THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT YOU BELIEVE HIM TO BE. BUT WHAT PURPOSE DOES IT SERVE EXPOSING HIM AS A RACIST, HIV POSITIVE EX-JUNKIE AND HOLOCAUST DENIER? NONE EXCEPT THAT OF TRUTH, AND THE TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE. $17 INCLUDING POSTAGE! THE BOOK IS 500 PAGES AND FULLY ILLUSTRATED.
There was a comment on the Bob Dylan webpage…
Everybody knows by now that there’s a gazillion books on me either out or coming out in the near future. So I’m encouraging anybody who’s ever met me, heard me or even seen me, to get in on the action and scribble their own book. You never know, somebody might have a great book in them. PG doesn’t write books. He did grow up in America, and has a few opinions about Bob Dylan. It ought to be good for a few hundred words here. (HT to dangerous minds ) (Chamblee54 has posted about Mr. Dylan before.)
The first time PG heard of Bob Dylan was probably at the record rack of Zippy’s dime store in Cherokee Plaza. There was an album of his greatest hits, and it came with a poster. The poster had a drawing of the man, with psychedelic waves of hair cascading in multi colored glory to the edges. PG never did buy the LP.

The former Mr. Zimmerman was never big on top 40 am radio. Somebody somewhere was getting a headache over those lyrics, but Atlanta GA was not somewhere in those days. By this time, Mr. Dylan had crashed his motorcycle, and gone into hiding. As the counter culture exploded (if only someone had disinfected that counter) the curly haired poet was in hiding, the subject of much speculation. At one point, people were stealing his garbage, and claiming to find evidence of investment in munitions firms. The neoscience of Dylanology continues to this day.

As PG got older and stupider, he heard more and more Bob Dylan music. In the summer of 1972, there was a performance at the Concert for Bangladesh. A couple of albums released during this era sucked, and some people stopped caring about Bob Dylan.

At the start of 1974, a tour was announced. The Band was to be the backing group. The circus came to the Omni, and PG got some of the mail order tickets. He couldn’t find anyone to use the second ticket, and sold it to a stranger outside the arena.

The show was nothing special. Bob Dylan excels at writing, is ok in the studio, and blah on stage. Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter was at the show, and was said to look bored. Mr. Dylan was invited to the Governor’s mansion after the show, and talked to the Governor. A lot of people in Georgia were surprised that Jimmy would want to run for President.
As the Seventies went me me meing into sex and drugs oblivion, Bob Dylan regained both his writing touch, and love of the spotlight. The Rolling Thunder tour happened, he got back together with Joan Baez, divorced his wife, became born again, became more Jewish, counted money, and generally lived the life. PG did his own version of all that, without Joan Baez or being circumcised again.

In the winter of 1991, America was consumed by war fever. Saddam Hussein had been elevated to next Hitler status, and had to be taught a lesson. One night, Bob Dylan played on a music awards show, and performed “Masters of War”. He played a discordant version of that ditty, with the result that few understood what he had said. By this time, Mr. Dylan had assembled a band, and gone out on the “Never Ending Tour”. A Bob Dylan concert had gone from being a special event, to being another name on the festival roster. Overexposure will do that.

On the last night of the Olympics in 1996, Bob Dylan played the House of Blues downtown. PG won a pair of the $80 tickets in a radio station contest. It was his only trip downtown during the games, and had to wait in a security line to get into Centennial Olympic Park.

The only celebrity, other than Mr. Dylan, seen at the House of Blues that night was Bill Walton. The band was competent…they impressed PG as being like a bar band that did a lot of Dylan songs, with a strangely authentic lead vocalist. The sound in the room was not good, at least in the spot where PG stood. The only song he recognized was “All along the Watchtower”, the Jimi Hendrix classic. Mr. Dylan got a cheer when he put his harmonica appliance on.










The aptly named dangerousminds has a link to a story about the recording of Blonde on Blonde, by Bob Dylan. It only happened once.

Bob Dylan was 24 years old, newly married, and had “sold out” i.e. started to play electric guitar. A bunch of Canadians known as The Hawks (later The Band) was touring with him. Barely a month after the release of “Highway 61 Revisited”, sessions started at a New York studio.

The New York sessions did not work, so a decision was made to go to Nashville. Al Kooper played organ, and served as a music director. A crew of Nashville players was recruited. A bass player named Joseph Souter, Jr. would become famous a few years later using the name Joe South. Kris Kristofferson was the janitor at the studio.

Most studios have bafflers, or sound proof room dividers, splitting the studio into cubicles. For these sessions, the bafflers were taken down, and the band played together as a unit.

The second session in Nashville started at 6pm and lasted until 530 the next morning. Mr. Dylan was working on the lyrics to “Sad eyed lady of the lowlands”, and the recording could not start until he was ready. The musicians played ping pong and waited. At 4am, the song was ready, and the record was finished in two takes.

PG had marginal encounters with two of the players on this album. He met a lady once, who worked in an insurance office. One of the customers was Joe South. His driving record file was an inch thick.

Al Kooper had a prosperous career after his association with Bob Dylan. The former Alan Peter Kuperschmidt produced the first three Lynyrd Skynyrd albums, sold that contract for a nice piece of change, and lived happily ever after.

One night, Mr. Kooper was playing a show at the Great Southeast Music Hall, and PG sat in front of the stage. During a break between songs, PG asked his friend “what time is it?”. Mr. Kooper heard him on stage, and said it was 11:30.










If it ever quits raining, PG is going to walk to the Chamblee library and return a book, and a cd. The cd is by Bob Dylan, and is a work of genius. The book is about the former Mr. Zimmerman, and is a piece of garbage. (BTW, Dylan is not the only Zimmerman to hit the big time. Ethel Merman was born Ethel Agnes Zimmerman.The Zimmerman telegram got us into World War I. The less said about George Zimmerman, the better)

When returning cd’s to a library, you need to get a check in receipt. Once, PG returned a stack of cd’s to the Brookhaven library. When checking them in, one was missed by the scanner. A few days later, there was a note in the mail about an overdue cd.

The good news was, the cd was on the shelf when PG went back to investigate, and the matter was quickly settled. It did not help that the cd was a collection of disco music called “Shake your booty”.

“The freewheelin’ Bob Dylan” was released in the early sixties, when the man was barely old enough to buy a drink. There is not a bad song on it, and several are classic rock staples. At a time when mindless pop dominated pop music, here were thoughtful, moving lyrics.

In 1991, with America in a war frenzy, Mr. Dylan appeared on a music awards show. He performed “Masters of War”, at a time when the majority would be appalled if they could understand what he was singing. Mr. Dylan has been reinvented many times, and often the lyrics get gargled.

Five years later, PG won tickets to a Bob Dylan concert. It was the last night of the Olympics, and the man was appearing at the House of Blues. (Tickets were $80, so the radio contest is the only reason PG went). It was like hearing a good bar band, that did nothing but Dylan songs, with the man as the vocalist. Due to the mix of the sound, PG could not recognize many of the songs.

The book is Bob Dylan: Prophet, Mystic, Poet by Seth Rogovoy. It tells the Dylan tale as a story of Jewish prophecy. PG got to page 16, where the author claims that “Like a Rolling Stone” “almost single handedly revolutionized rock’n roll music”. Huh?

PG was eating dinner, and did not have anything else to read. He got to page 38. Nothing in the next 22 pages changed his mind away from ditching the book. How does nonsense like this get published?








The 1954 Deferment

Posted in History, Library of Congress, War by chamblee54 on May 23, 2018


As the reader(s) of this blog might notice, there is material posted every day at chamblee54. On many days, PG is too lazy to write new material, and goes into the archive. Today, there are two pieces. 1954 Deferment is from the blogspot version of chamblee54. In 2007, PG had a job making local deliveries, and listened to talk radio. Neal Boortz was in his glory. One day, PG heard enough about Vietnam, and decided to tell his own story. It is below. This post is written in first person.

A prominent radio whiner has been urged to come clean on his military record. In the spirit of not being a hypocrite, and with the optimistic thought that someone is interested, I have decided to do the same. I have what I call a 1954 deferment. I didn’t get a lottery number until the winter of 1973, after the Paris accords had been signed. My number was 337. The minimum age to sign up in those days was 17. If I had been gung ho to stop communism , I could have signed up in 1971.

By 1971 the war was over for America. We were trying something called “Vietnamization”, which meant we were bringing the combat troops home. Mr. Kissinger was working day and night to secure an acceptable treaty, which Mr. Nixon called Peace with Honor. A few weeks before the 1972 election, the announcement was made that “Peace is at hand”. What this treaty meant was that we got our P.O.W.s back, and withdrew the last of the combat troops. The North Vietnamese troops were not required to withdraw. After a while, with Mr. Nixon distracted by Watergate and the American Public in no mood to help, “Charlie” finished the conquest of South Vietnam. Whether we got all the P.O.W.s back is a subject of controversy. There is speculation that some P.O.W.’s were kept in Asia.

I graduated from High School in June 1972. This was in between the death of J. Edgar Hoover and the arrest of the Watergate Burglars. Jane Fonda”s trip to Hanoi was in July of 1972. Anti-war protests hit a peak during the Moratorium, in Autumn 1969. There was a last surge in May 1970, after the incursion into Cambodia. During this time we had the killings at Kent State, and suddenly protest didn’t seem like as much fun. That, combined with Vietnamization, served to quiet the antiwar movement. The Kent State killings were two days before my 16th birthday. The spell check suggestions for Vietnamization are Victimization, and Minimization.

I didn’t go to Vietnam. What if I had been a few years older? The truth is, I don’t know. You really don’t know what you would do until you have to. Probably, I would have gone the student deferment route, or something else non confrontational, to stay in North America. In the early stages of the War I supported it. In the winter of 1966, I attended a rally at Atlanta Stadium called “Affirmation Vietnam”. At that time, the war protesters were seen as weirdos. It wasn’t for a few more years that people realized their government was lying, and got tired of the pointless bloodshed.

In 1965, some people still believed the government when they heard we needed to stop communism. There was a draft, or legally enforced recruiting. The spirit of patriotism from World War II was still strong. When a young man got a draft notice, many assumed it was their duty to go. Many of the fatalities in Vietnam were conscripted troops.

Offends You. is based on a long forgotten facebook page, “If-the-American-Flag-offends-you-Ill-be-happy-to-help-you-pack.” In 2010, PG would see a prompt like that, and spit out a few hundred words before you could say media bias. And almost nobody would read it. The only function this text has is to go between the pictures.

There is a facebook page now, “If-the-American-Flag-offends-you-Ill-be-happy-to-help-you-pack.” This rubs PG the wrong way. PG has had a good life in The USA, and cannot imagine living anywhere else. He pays taxes without complaint. PG compares his thoughts about America with his thoughts about his hometown, of Atlanta GA. He has had a good life in both places, and does not want to live anywhere else. And yet, no one is ever asked to “die for Atlanta”. That duty is reserved for the national political unit. If PG had been 110 years older, he would have had to opportunity to die for Georgia.

The Stars and Stripes should not be used for jewelry, or as a gimmick. The flag should be respected, not left out in direct sunlight for years at a time, until the red, white, and blue is pink, gray, and lavender. A few years ago, after a Supreme Court ruling about flag burning, PG worked with someone who drove a van. There was a bumper sticker on that van, with the American Flag, and the message “Try burning this one”. That van was parked in direct sunlight every day, and the sun burned those colors off that van. Most people don’t consider this.

No, the American Flag does not offend PG. However, Facebook groups that would try to bully people who don’t have the “correct” opinion about this symbol…that would seek to create conflict between citizens…that does offend PG. Pictures today are from The Library of Congress. The photographer was Dorothea Lange, working in 1939 California.

Anglo Persian Oil Company

Posted in History, Library of Congress, War by chamblee54 on May 12, 2018

People are saying more and more about the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. TomDispatch has a fascinating paragraph about one of the key players, British Petroleum (BP): “Originally known as the Anglo-Persian Oil Company (later the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, still later British Petroleum), BP got its start in southwestern Iran, where it once enjoyed a monopoly on the production of crude petroleum. In 1951, its Iranian holdings were nationalized by the democratic government of Mohammed Mossadeq. The company returned to Iran in 1953, following a U.S.-backed coup that put the Shah in power, and was finally expelled again in 1979 following the Islamic Revolution.”
If you look at the problems of the world in the last forty years, so many are affected by Iran. The 1953 revolution left great resentment, which became manifest in the 1979 revolution. Soon Iraq…whose border with Iran was clumsily drawn by the British…decides to attack Iran. A gruesome eight year war is the result, with the USA supporting both sides (as well as possibly encouraging Iraq to attack Iran). The idea was, if they are fighting each other, they will leave Israel alone.

After this war is over, Iraq has a problem with Kuwait over it’s war debt. Another war is the result, with the USA involved. Iraq is vanquished, but some in the USA are not satisfied, and after a few years the USA invades Iraq again. That war is still raging.

The biggest winner of the US-Iraq war (aka World War W) is Iran. This new influence in Persia is very troubling to Israel, which is loudly rattling it’s nuclear saber. While Israel is making noise about Iran, it takes attention away from the Palestinian tragedy.

Pictures are from The Library of Congress. This is a repost from 2010. TomDispatch is still open. The feature today, Beating the War Drums… Again, is about Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Sixty Four Years Twelve Presidents

Posted in Georgia History, History, Library of Congress, Politics, War by chamblee54 on May 3, 2018


This is a repost from 2010 and 2016. It is about the twelve Presidents, one fourth of the total, who have helped themselves served over the last sixty two years. Barack Obama got re-elected, and killed lots of people. The less said about Donald J. Trump, the better.

Every four years, someone will say this is the worst choice ever. Every four years, someone will say this is the most important election ever. They are always correct. The choice in 2016 was between Donald John Trump and Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton. Choosing between those two idiots was challenging. The good news is that most people live in states where the electoral votes are conceded to one of the duopoly parties. These voters can focus on local elections.

Listening to the news shows that came on before the cartoons, PG heard the phrase “President Eisenhower”. As a friends explained to him, G-d made everything, but the President is Eisenhower.

When he was six, PG moved to a new house, and started first grade. There was an election that fall, and someone named Kennedy became President. PG wasn’t old enough to pay attention to the news yet, except when it looked like the Russians were going to kill us all in 1962.

The first news story that PG clearly remembers was the day when his fourth grade teacher, Miss McKenzie, told the class that President Kennedy had been shot. One of the worst moments that weekend was the moment when a plane landed in Washington, and the new President spoke on television. THAT was the new President? Yuck.

Lyndon Johnson was a larger than life figure, and was hated by millions of Amuricuns. While there was some good done by LBJ, it was overshadowed by the War in Vietnam. When he left office in 1968, the voters had a horrible choice …Hubert Humphrey, Richard Nixon, or George Wallace.

Tricky Dick Nixon is another larger than life figure, with millions of Americans screaming for his impeachment. For some reason, there were others who passionately admired the man.

In 1973, the oil companies tried to say there was an oil shortage. Later that year, Egypt, Syria, and Jordan attacked Israel, and the Arab oil producers cut oil to the USA. After this embargo, OPEC was in charge of the oil supply, and the price of gasoline increased 200%. The era of big money oil was on. What a convenient war.

After the ethical shortcomings of Mr. Nixon became too obnoxious to ignore, Gerald Ford became President. On a policy level, Ford was like all the other Presidents…some things he got right, some things he got wrong. On a personality level…the show business part…Ford excelled. His family provided harmless fodder for the gossipmongers. He was a likable man, a welcome break from the meanness of Richard Nixon and Lyndon Johnson.

When PG was a kid at Ashford Park School, there had never been a President from Georgia. It seemed impossible. When Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter announced he was running, it seemed like another ego tripper running for President. The funny thing is, he won. It still seems a bit unreal, like having the Olympics in Atlanta.

Jimmy was a Democrat, with attack Republicans fighting him every step of the way. This is a problem later Democrats in the Oval Office will have. On the policy level, he did better than many realize. Many of his achievements only bore fruit after he left office. On the show biz front, his down home Georgia routine did not appeal to many Yankees. In 1980, he was defeated by an actor.

PG was worried when Ronald Reagan took office. With America’s nuclear arsenal, and the Soviet Union wheezing it’s threat, many thought that Ronnie would start the war to kill us all. The good news is, this war never happened. Whatever tough talk came out of Washington was not matched by military adventurism abroad.

Reagan was the master of show business. He was an actor, playing the greatest role of his career. It was said that if America had a figure head monarch, Reagan would have been terrific. On the policy front, taxes were cut, and the budget increased. The national debt went over a trillion dollars, which was seen as a horrible moment. (The annual budget deficit is now over a trillion dollars.)

When Mr. Reagan’s two terms were over, George H.W. Bush took over. This was an era where the Democrats could not do anything right on a national level. Bush presided over a war, and brought the troops home when the mission was over. His image never appealed, and the whiners were not pleased. A computer salesman named Ross Perot decided to run as a third party candidate.

In the winter of 1992, PG had a little job downtown. One day, there was a rally at the CNN center for a little known Presidential candidate. PG went, and said to a friend, If this guy gets elected, you are going to regret not going to see him. At the time, War Winner Bush seemed unbeatable, and PG said that with high sarcasm.

When he got to CNN center, it was obvious that a big money event was unfolding. The place was packed, with school children bussed in to fill all the seats. Finally, the speakers blared “Twist and Shout” at top volume, and Bill Clinton walked on the stage. PG was not especially impressed.

Clinton inspired toxic hatred, but managed to keep the boat floating. He won reelection, with the Republicans seeming to self destruct. The economy was going good, the budget was balanced, and the haters went wild. After a entertaining sex scandal, the Clinton years were over.

A couple of weeks before the 2000 election, PG liked neither candidate, and did not think it made much difference. (With Georgia’s electoral votes certain to go Republican, PG did not have a vote.) He listened to someone talking, who thought that it was important that Gore won. PG remembered that conversation often during the next eight years.

George W. Bush was a disaster. It is possible that 911 was a personal vendetta against the Bush family, and would not have happened if Gore was President. The reaction of Bush to this tragedy was to start two wars that we have not been able to finish. In 2016, we are still in Afghanistan.

Next was Barack Obama, the first dark skinned President. He continued the war happy ways of the Bush regime. BHO was reelected in 2012, and given four more years to wage war. He managed to avoid the second term scandals that crippled Mr. Nixon and Mr. Clinton.

In the next election, the democrats decided that calling people racist was a good campaign strategy. As a result, Donald J. Trump was elected. America is more racially divided than ever, which the election of Mr. Obama was supposed to remedy. With the nation distracted by screaming racism, the congress has cut taxes, and produced a multi-trillion dollar budget deficit. America might survive. Pictures for this feature are from the The Library of Congress.