Saturday, August 30, 2014

California Wine: Santa Cruz Mountains

The following article appeared in last Sunday's San Francisco Chronicle in the 'California Wine' special section. Although Napa and Sonoma are the counties that usually are thought of when people think of the local wine industry, Santa Cruz County ranks high as well. Not surprisingly, Cisalpine influence was present from the beginning.

Santa Cruz Mountains blend chill and warmth for Pinot to Cabernet

By Patrick Comiskey - San Francisco Chronicle - August 23, 2014

The San Andreas Fault runs right through the Santa Cruz Mountains appellation, separating parts of the Pacific plate to the west and the North American plate to the east. Between them, geographical chaos ensues. Not surprisingly, it can seem hard to get around by car, with all the winding mountain roads.

There are more than 70 vineyards and wineries in the area, but aside from Ridge and David Bruce, nearly all are tiny and obscured behind mantles of towering redwoods and Douglas firs. The region is largely defined by elevation, and the fog line, so you won’t see many vines planted below 800 feet.

The slopes are so dramatic, and the climatic conditions so variable, that the Santa Cruz Mountains are one of those rare places in the state where it’s possible to farm Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon on the same estate.

“We’re definitely on the cool side for Cabernet,” says winemaker Jeffrey Patterson, who grows all three, “and probably a little on the warm side for Pinot Noir.”

Patterson farms and makes wine at Mount Eden Vineyards, one of the mountains’ most historic properties, a hidden enclave that has been continuously farmed for grapes since 1946, when a stockbroker named Martin Ray ventured to the property outside Saratoga, seeking high-elevation slopes upon which to plant Pinot Noir. From his aerie, Ray was one of the era’s most cantankerous but also talented winemakers, a gadfly for everything from proper cellar methods to more transparent varietal labeling.

When you factor in Ray’s tenure, Mount Eden remains the oldest continuous producer of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in the country.

Total acres: 408,000

Known for: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon.

Defining features: Proximity to the Pacific and its effects result in an appellation with a wildly varying climate. Sedimentary and volcanic soils, depending on which side of the San Andreas Fault you’re on.

Places to visit: Mount Eden Vineyards (tours only by appointment), 22020 Mount Eden Rd., Saratoga. (408) 867-5832.

Ridge Vineyards (weekends, and weekdays by appointment), 17100 Monte Bello Road, Cupertino. (408) 867-3233.

Thomas Fogarty Winery, 19501 Skyline Drive, Woodside. (650) 851-6777.


A few Santa Cruz County wineries, not necessary in the mountains:


Santa Cruz Mountains Winegrowers Association


Friday, August 29, 2014

"6 Californias" initiative quietly moving foreward - Part 3

I always thought that a simple "north-south" divide would be best for California, with Monterey County being on the north side. Not the general divide in which two-thirds of the state is considered "northern California." Of course, there are many pluses and minuses to California, two Califonias, or six Californias. Although it doesn't move me either way personally, it's curious that most of urban and coastal-central California is heavily Democrat, while the rest of the mostly rural parts of the state are Republican.

"Six California" feels like a coalition of Silicon Valley concerns--the new billionaires--flexing their muscles against the modern state establishment. If this passes in 2016, which is unlikely, they would have their own defacto state. These concerns may actually just be using this as a launching pad for long-term goals to be reached stepping-stone style at some later point. Things change fast in California. Who would have thought that San Francisco would be turning Republican, as it is in a slow steady pace though gentrification. As is usually the case, this isn't some idea that Tim Draper thought up; he's a figurehead for these Silicon Valley concerns.

State of Jefferson (Wikipedia)

The State of Jefferson is a proposed U.S. state that would span the contiguous, mostly rural area of southern Oregon and northern California, where several attempts to secede from Oregon and California, respectively, have taken place in order to gain statehood.

This region on the Pacific Coast is the most famous of several that have sought to adopt the name of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States. Thomas Jefferson sent the Lewis and Clark expedition into the Pacific Northwest in 1803, and envisioned the establishment of an independent nation in the western portion of North America which he dubbed the "Republic of the Pacific", hence the association of his name with regional autonomy. The independence movement (rather than statehood) is instead known as Cascadia.The State of Jefferson is a proposed U.S. state that would span the contiguous, mostly rural area of southern Oregon and northern California, where several attempts to secede from Oregon and California, respectively, have taken place in order to gain statehood.

This region on the Pacific Coast is the most famous of several that have sought to adopt the name of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States. Thomas Jefferson sent the Lewis and Clark expedition into the Pacific Northwest in 1803, and envisioned the establishment of an independent nation in the western portion of North America which he dubbed the "Republic of the Pacific", hence the association of his name with regional autonomy. The independence movement (rather than statehood) is instead known as Cascadia.


The movement(s) for a Jefferson state go back to 1941, with the most recent starting in 1998 ( Naturally they're excited with this proposal, as it includes the full portion of Jefferson as far as California is concerned (they want to include part of southern Oregon as well). They don't feel represented by Sacramento (or Salem) both politically or culturally. The website must be under reconstruction, as it usually has a lot of webpages and an archive of podcasts.


Thursday, August 28, 2014

"6 Californias" initiative quietly moving foreward - Part 2

'Six Californias? The Nation’s Biggest Potential Breakup'

Six California initiative to create six new states

by Josh Jones - - February 10, 2014

No US territory has gained statehood since Hawaii in 1959, but that hasn’t been for a lack of trying. In November 2012, a majority of Puerto Ricans voted in a “non-binding referendum” in favor of statehood. In November of 2013, eleven counties voted to secede to form the state of North Colorado. Five counties voted in the affirmative.

And late last year, venture capitalist and Silicon Valley millionaire Tim Draper revealed his plan to split California into six new states. He isn’t the first to call for dividing California, either. A South California was proposed as recently as 2011 by Riverside County Supervisor Jeff Stone, and the ‘State of Jefferson,’ a contingent of several northern Californian and southern Oregonian counties, has been trying to garner support for secession since the 1850s.

The Six Californias Initiative would split the state into six—‘Jefferson,’ ‘North California,’ ‘Central California,’ ‘Silicon Valley,’ ‘West California,’ and ‘South California.’

While most current secession movements are due to friction between big-city liberals and small-town conservatives, Mr. Draper has resurrected another common separatist complaint – the state is simply too big and unmanageable.

“The weather is so good here that people don’t want to move out no matter how much they spend for the worst services,” Draper affirms. “We spend the most on education and we are 46th in performance. We spend among the most for prisons, and we have among the highest recidivism rates. We used to spend 26% on infrastructure and now we spend 3%. Overall, the state is a failure for its constituents, and there are a lot of good people who have tried to make it work for all of us.”

The solution? Free market economics, says Draper. “The monopoly needs to be broken up, so that states can compete with each other for counties and constituents and so Californians can choose the state that works for them.” Under the plan, statesmen would need to effectively ‘court’ their citizens during a period of stabilization in which counties would have the option of switching over to adjacent states before borders are finalized.

California is currently ranked as the world’s ninth largest economy, and accounts for roughly 13% of the United States’ GDP. The state also makes up 12% of the US population. While the average US Senator represents a little over 3 million people, Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein represent nearly 19 million—each. Some have raised the question–can two people adequately represent 38 million Californians in the Upper House?


But Draper questions California’s ability to represent its constituents even on the more ‘basic’ state level: “California is a state of many issues and values. In the south, people are concerned about immigration. In the north, taxation without representation. In the Central Valley, it is all about water to feed the world. In Silicon Valley, it is about having a government that can keep up with technology. By trying to be all things to all people, California has failed us all.”

More than a few lack Draper’s enthusiasm. With opponents bemoaning everything from the carving up of the California education system to the tragedy of adding stars to the US flag, many see the switch to six states as reaching for too much, too soon. Others have dismissed the Six California Initiative as a ploy by the Silicon Valley elite to escape anti-business regulations and shrug off the responsibility of supporting impoverished regions such as Los Angeles. Draper disagrees.

“It turns out that the people with the most to gain are [those] who are currently in the poorer areas. The existing ungovernable California is not working for them. The people of [the proposed states of] ‘Jefferson’ and ‘Central California’” are the most anxious to create their own states. In Jefferson, they are upset with a “fire tax” that only affects them and very little of the money finds its way back up to Jefferson. In Central California, they are constantly at war with Sacramento over water. The real question is why we are allowing a state to continue to exist when all systems are failing, and there are people who are poor and poorly represented in government.”

The movement has shown signs of gaining momentum. On February 4th the Washington Times highlighted a California legislative report that declared Draper’s plan “clearly legal and doable”.  According to the Times article, organizers are working to collect the 1 million signatures needed for the initiative to appear on the ballot in 2014.

Of course, the plan would ultimately have to be approved by Congress. When asked whether this could pose a potential roadblock, Draper responded, “I actually expect New York to move to create 3 states. Texas might create 5. Local representation is better representation. I don’t think Washington can be so selfish as to keep people from better representation.”

Will California buy it? Draper certainly thinks so. “I think the best way to get support is from [the] grassroots. It will take time. People often have a resistance to change, but once they start thinking about what their state could be if it got a fresh start, people become evangelists.”


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Famous Cisalpines outside of Padania: Part 5

From the video description: Jeno Paulucci and Neil Cavuto discuss the Great Depression in relation to modern hard times (2011).

From the video description:

While Joan Veon passed away in October of 2010, this may be one of the most important videos that you watch this year.

This explains how the One World Government is here now and how those countries that refuse to be a part of it can be taken out.

Up until September 1994, Joan Veon was just a businesswoman. As a result of attending the United Nations Conference on Population and Development in Cairo, Egypt, she received her “wake up call” as she found there was more going on at the global level than most Americans knew, understood or were being told.

From the video description: On the March 26, 2014 edition of "Nature of Reality Radio" I welcomed Michael Cremo who is the co-author of the book "Forbidden Archeology" and a regular guest on the History Channel show "Ancient Aliens." We discussed how much of mainstream archaeology and history is either fraudulent or not telling the whole truth...


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Famous Cisalpines outside of Padania: Part 4

From the video description: Remembering Diane Cilento, one of Queensland's greatest acting exports, who passed away after a long battle with cancer (2011).

One of Graciano Rocchigiani early tests, against former middleweight contender Mustafa Hamsho (Düsseldorf; 1987; short fight).

An interview with well-known artist and San Francisco native Layla Fanucci.


Monday, August 25, 2014

Famous Cisalpines outside of Padania: Part 3

The Puppini Sisters singing 'Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy'. They've performed all over the world. Marcella Puppini in the middle.

B.C. Lions running back Jon Volpe scores a touchdown. From the video description: Often overlooked in lists of the greatest CFL games of all time is this 1991 classic between the Toronto Argonauts and the B.C. Lions.

Funny little interview. Journalist "Paul Lemieux" (Giovanni Ribisi) interviews Kristin Cavallari in another edition of 'One on One'.


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Famous Cisalpines outside of Padania: Part 2

General Carl Vuono - probably a Cisalpine
Just to continue with the previous posting, Manuel Belgrano was an important Argentine economist, lawyer, politician, and military leader during the early 1800's. He took part in the Argentine Wars of Independence and created the Flag of Argentina. He is regarded as one of the main "Libertadores" of the country. A very important figure in Argentine history, he was of Ligurian ancestry. General Carl E. Vuono was a U.S. Army General who served as Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army from 1987 to 1991. His place of birth, Monongahela, seems to suggest that his father was of Camunian (Lombardian) ancestry. His mother was of Finnish descent.

Michael Cremo is an independent author and researcher, possibly of Cisalpine ancestry. His most well known work is the book 'Forbidden Archeology: The Hidden History of the Human Race' (1994; Cremo and Thompson), in which clear evidence far predating the supposed period of human existence is presented. When fossils and artifacts don't fit the mainstream mold, they're stored away in warehouses. Whether or not he's of Cisalpine descent, I think he's done great work. Jon Volpe was a star running back for the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League. Starring alongside college and future NFL star quarterback Doug Flutie, he won the CFL's Most Outstanding Rookie Award in 1991 with 1,395 yards and 20 touchdowns. With the name "Volpe," and being a  native of Upper Michigan, seems to suggest that he's of perhaps Lombardo-Venetian descent... or at least of some Cisalpine roots.

I wanted make mention the late Joan Veon (1949-2010), which is hard to do because nothing I could write in a few sentences could ever be good enough. She was originally from Racine, Wisconsin and I think of Piedmontese ancestry, but regardless, she was a truly great American. With a Bachelor’s degree in Business, she became wealthy in the financial world, and was looking forward to retiring and moving on to new things. Instead of doing that, she—at her own expense— traveled to over 100 of the top globalist meetings to capture the most crucial information and present the big picture to all who have ears to hear and who are not afraid of the truth. After forming a media group, for sixteen years she interviewed and asked key questions of prime ministers, presidents, kings, and heads of state.

At times, as the only American reporter, Joan covered over 103 international meetings, including: the G7, G8, G10, G20, and Bank for International Settlements (BIS) in Basel Switzerland; attended yearly the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland; and twice a year covered the IMF World Bank meetings. In addition she attended UN meetings on the Free Trade Areas of the Americas, Sustainable Development, the Earth Summit, Climate Control, the International World Court, and numerous others. Probably her best known work was the 1999 book 'United Nations Global Strait Jacket'. If, for example, most of the wealthiest men and concerns in the world kept getting together to talk about abolishing private property (Agenda 21)... wouldn't it at least be logical to look into it?  

Joe Satriani - probably not a Cisalpine
Singer-songwriter Marcella Puppini, originally from Bologna, formed the musical trio The Puppini Sisters with two English women. The group is associated with a burlesque revival, and they're quite entertaining. Sergio Pizzorno is a British guitarist and songwriter, best known for his work with the rock band Kasabian. He is of Ligurian descent. The late Marino Pieretti was another of the many "San Francisco Italian" Major League Baseball stars. Pieretti was born in Lucca, Tuscany and grew up in North Beach. There's a mural with his name at the Crocker-Amazon playground in San Francisco, nearby the old bocce ball courts. Small reminders of what is becoming a forgotten heritage in the area. Popular actress Kate Walsh is of half Italian ancestry, probably Cisalpine. She is originally from San Jose, California.

Alexander Rossi is an up and coming auto racing star from California. The late Jim Pagliaroni was a Major League Baseball catcher for many years during the 50's and 60's. He was originally from Dearborn, Michigan. Marco Scutaro is a Major League Baseball infielder who was named MVP of the 2012 National League Championship Series with the Giants. Although very likely of Southern Italian descent and being from Venezuela, he brings up the issue of Italians from South America who are seemingly not regarded by anyone as "being Italian." Personally, I think that there is a clear connection at least with "the cone of South America" as far as Italian.. or European heritage in general. However with Venezuela, being a largely Amerindian and African country, I can understand the disconnect. Joseph "Joe" Satriani is a veteran instrumental rock guitarist who seems to have done everything and been everywhere in the rock music world. Born to Italian immigrants, someone may have suggested to me that he could be of Cisalpine descent.

Piero Scaruffi is a well known freelance software consultant and university lecturer, apparently from Piemonte originally. "Piero Scaruffi's knowledge base" website. The late Don Mossi was a major league pitcher from 1954 to 1965. He was a left-handed control pitcher whose strikeout-to-walk ratio was regularly among the league leaders (he led the league in 1961). He was born in St. Helena in Napa County, California, and grew up in Daly City (just south of San Francisco); both cities with roots of people of Cisalpine ancestry.. at least then. Kristin Cavallari is a popular television personality, fashion designer, and actress.. originally from Denver. Gina Gretta is a young actress from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. San Francisco native Lady Fanucci is a well known local artist.

The late Lani O'Grady (Lanita Agratti) was an actress best remembered for her role as Mary Bradford in the early 80's television series 'Eight is Enough'. Originally from Walnut Creek, California, and of Italian-American parentage.. presumably Cisalpine. An entry from an IMDB-user: I had the pleasure of meeting Lani O'Grady back in 1989 when she came to Crawfordville, Indiana for a 4th of July fundraiser. She was full of pep and joy as she met everyone with a big smile and a hug. Heck, she even let me kiss her!! She was really a crowd pleaser and the fans just loved her. To me, Lani was a wonderful person and it broke my heart when I heard she had passed on. She will never be forgotten. Rest in peace Lani!!! I will never forget that 4th of July!!!


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Famous Cisalpines outside of Padania: Part 1

Diane Cilento - probably a Cisalpine
The problem with identifying people of Cisalpine ancestry is three-fold. One, there's often no way to be certain. For example, Olympic gold-medalist Alpine skier Julia Mancuso appears to be Cisalpine from appearance and where she is from. She is actually half Calabrian and half.. Irish, German, something or another.

Two, it's not necessarily all that important anyway. Enrico Fermi was from Rome, and is actually of Piedmontese ancestry. There have been famous and important Cisalpines in the United States far beyond what logic would dictate. However, a community doesn't absolutely need these types of role-models.

Three, with many races or ethnic groups, there can exist a type of ungenuine "cult of celebrity." Certain people will run around trying to "make claim" on as many famous people as possible. Often these celebrities could care less about their ancestry in the first place! I'm tempted to give a few colorful and humorous examples of this, but something tells me that it's not a good idea. Suffice to say that those individuals who you associate with on any concern, are really the important people for that concern.

I thought that I would share just a small sampling of certain well-known people who I have come across or were suggested to me by others as possible Cisalpines. After this, I'm not going to keep track of this subject as a general rule. Just for the record, a "Padanian-American" is a "European-American" with some genuine roots in the former "northern nations." It's safe to say that not all of the following people are of Cisalpine ancestry.

Grammy nominee Francesca Battistelli, from New York City, is a star of the Christian music genre. Attorney, Prosecutor, and Author Vincent Bugliosi, from Minnesota, is most famous as the Prosecutor in the trial of Charles Manson. Graciano Rocchigiani is a former world super middleweight and light heavyweight boxing champion. He was born in Germany of Italian parentage, and looks like a German which makes me think his parents may have been from perhaps Lombardy. Actress Rene Russo, from California, is Italian on both sides, presumably Cisalpine.

Geraldine Ferraro - probably not a Cisalpine
Someone seems to have told me that young actress Brittany Curran, from Massachusetts, has some Cisalpine roots. The late World War II Medal of Honor recipient Mike Colalillo, from Duluth, Minnesota, is an Italian-American. Duluth is an area with deep roots for people of Lombardian and Cisalpine ancestry. Tony Iommi is the former guitarist for the heavy metal band Black Sabbath (lead singer Ozzy Osbourne). Born in Birmingham, England of Italian parentage.. possibly Cisalpine. Actor Jim Caviezel, from Washington state, has some Romansh roots. The Romansh language is of Latin origin, and was once much more prevalent in northeast Italy and Switzerland.

Someone seems to have told me that Canadian actor Enrico Colantoni was of Cisalpine descent. Actress Beverly D'Angelo, from Columbus, Ohio, always has seemed to me to have Cisalpine roots. I really don't know, but I loved 'National Lampoon's Vacation'.. which has an almost cult following even today. The late Geraldine Ferraro is a former vice presidential candidate for the Democrat Party, and an Italian-American from a town about sixty miles north of New York City. Her mother was from Campania in Southern Italy, but it just seems that she may have Cisalpine roots on her paternal side.. perhaps not. The late Jeno Paulucci was an important businessman and entrepreneur from St. Louis County, Minnesota (county seat is Duluth). He founded over seventy companies, including Bellisio Foods, and was likely of Lombardian or Cisalpine ancestry.

The late former Major League Baseball Shortstop and Manager Jim Fregosi was born in San Francisco and raised in San Mateo County. As you can see, he has a long resume with numerous records, and was very likely of Cisalpine ancestry. A few years ago, there was a long article in the San Francisco Chronicle about the history of "San Francisco Italian" Major League baseball players.. which I lost. They were virtually all Cisalpines, and it was quite a history; however, we must admit that the most famous was a Sicilian, Joe DiMaggio. The late Australian actress Diane Cilento was an Academy Award Nominee for Best Supporting Actress ('Tom Jones'; British; 1963; with Albert Finney and Susannah York). She was well known to American audiences, and it's a pretty good bet that she was a Cisalpine.

Dante Gabriel Rossetti was a famous poet, illustrator, painter and translator. He was born in London of Italian parentage, and was very likely of Cisalpine ancestry. The lifelike detail in his art was truly amazing, as well as beautiful. James A. Baffico--born in San Francisco in 1942 when the city was heavily Cisalpine--is a television soap opera director, producer, actor, and script writer. Film composer Marco Beltrami, from New York City, has a very Cisalpine surname. Sabina Magliocco  is a professor of Anthropology and Folklore at California State University, Northridge. Born in Topeka, Kansas to Italian immigrant parents, she may be of Tuscan descent.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

'St Matthew Passion'

Hungarian Festival Choir - Hungarian State Symphony Orchestra - conducted by Géza Oberfrank

St Matthew Passion

The St Matthew Passion (also frequently St Matthew's Passion; German: Matthäus-Passion), BWV 244 is a sacred oratorio from the Passions written by Johann Sebastian Bach in 1727 for solo voices, double choir and double orchestra, with libretto by Picander (Christian Friedrich Henrici). It sets chapters 26 and 27 of the Gospel of Matthew (in the German translation of Martin Luther) to music, with interspersed chorales and arias. It is widely regarded as one of the masterpieces of classical sacred music. The original Latin title Passio Domini Nostri J.C. Secundum Evangelistam Matthaeum translates to "The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ according to the Evangelist Matthew."

Although Bach wrote four (or five) settings of the Passions only two have survived; the other is the St John Passion. The St Matthew Passion was probably first performed on Good Friday (11 April) 1727 in the Thomaskirche in Leipzig, where Bach was the Kantor of the School and Directoris Chori musici of Leipzig. He revised it by 1736, performing it again on 30 March 1736, this time including two organs in the instrumentation. He further revised and performed it again on 23 March 1742. Possibly due to the second organ being under repair, he switched the continuo instrument to harpsichord in Chorus II, reinforced the continuo group in Chorus II with a viola da gamba, and inserted a ripieno soprano in both movements 1 and 29. There is evidence of a further revision in 1743–1746, when the score as it is known originated, but no performance.


Tuesday, August 5, 2014

"6 Californias" initiative quietly moving foreward - Part 1

California split: Petition to break state into 6 garners over 800,000 signatures - July 15, 2014

Backers of the ‘Six Californias’ plan say they have obtained enough signatures to prompt a referendum on carving up the most populous US state. Campaign leaders claim the split would remedy many problems by creating more effective local governments.

Campaign spokesperson Roger Salazar said the ‘Six Californias’ plan has gained over the 808,000 signatures necessary to include the issue in a 2016 ballot. The idea would be to split the world’s eighth-largest economy geographically into Jefferson, North California, Silicon Valley, Central California, West California and South California.

"It’s important because it will help us create a more responsive, more innovative and more local government, and that ultimately will end up being better for all of Californians," said Salazar on Monday in a statement.

Campaign organizers plan to submit the petition in Sacramento on Tuesday to set the wheels in motion for a 2016 vote. The initiative was dreamt up by Silicon Valley venture capitalist Tim Draper who believes that “with Six Californias, we can refresh our government."

The billionaire, who made his money investing in internet startups like Skype and Hotmail, has shelled out almost $2 million in his own money to help fund the campaign.

“Six Californias is our opportunity to solve the many problems we face today. Six Californias gives us an opportunity to create a better future for all 38 million of us,” said a campaign statement on Monday.

Critics have slammed the plan as a waste of time and money and maintain that it will actually worsen California’s most pressing problems.


"This is a colossal and divisive waste of time, energy, and money that will hurt the California brand,” Steven Maviglio, a Democratic political strategist who has formed the group OneCalifornia with GOP strategist Joe Rodota to fight Draper’s plan, told Reuters.

A Field Poll carried out in February of this year showed that 59 percent of Californians were opposed to the idea of breaking up their state. However, even if the campaigners manage to boost the popularity of their initiative, they will still face the major obstacle of winning the approval of both Congress and the State Legislature.

Draper has accepted that the vote is a “long shot,” but claims that he can convince people that a change is necessary for the state with the “worst-managed government in the country.”

Six Californias on Twitter

Six Californias? The Nation’s Biggest Potential Breakup (Josh Jones; The Stanford Review; February 10, 2014)

Six Californias (Wikipedia)


Monday, August 4, 2014

"The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it."



Sunday, August 3, 2014

'Minneapolis Renames Columbus Day As Indigenous People's Day' - Part 2

After viewing many Columbus Day protests, I found it amusing that elsewhere like New York City, the parade goes on seemingly without a hitch. About a minute into this video, you will see the name of an organization called the Columbus Citizens Foundation. The foundation is in full support of anything Columbus, but is based on "Italian heritage" not specifically "Columbus." In other words, from what I can gather, they avoid any "intellectualizing" about all the facets of the Columbus issue (just as the opposing side does), and merely hangs their hat on the "Italian-American" heritage concept.

There's an old saying that I think is mostly true: "Every nation was born in blood." Christopher Columbus was one of many explorers in the New World, starting with Leif Erikson. Erikson was even praised by President Obama... a sometimes-anti-imperialist. Erikson certainly would have set up a permanent colony along the eastern Canadian coast, but it was too far out of the way at that time. Beyond Leif Erikson, all of these early explorers did their part to set up the Americas for colonization.

Columbus, to some "the new Hitler"
Personally, I believe that it was actually "Spanish, Portuguese, English, French, and Dutch Imperialism," not "EUROPEAN IMPERIALISM." Again, how many nations participated? There were perhaps fifty European nations in 1492! If someone doesn't like something that China did, they can't blame Tibet, even if they may look similar! If something bad happens in Algeria, you can't blame Pakistan, even if they may look similar! Even the overwhelming colonization of later times right up to the 60s, was the United Kingdom, France, Portugal, and Holland; with the rest being small and sporadic. Even Soviet expansion into Asia, early on, was in huge very depopulated regions.

There's nothing that "the West" did in the New World that Islam did not equal or surpass for 1,500 years on three continents. What did the Berbers, an Indo-European-like people in northwest Africa, endure that the Amerindians didn't endure? They were either driven from their lands or forced to convert to a foreign religion and culture. Islamic colonization took down many peoples and cultures in this manner; just as the Catholic Church did... but some people prefer to ignore all of the facts and just blame Columbus. There was imperialism and slavery all over the world long before Columbus.

Sometimes Mexico is included among the victims of American Imperialism. Really? That's really selling Mexico short, as it adhered to all of the same imperialism, slave trading, and religious supremacy. There aren't too many people in Mexico who don't speak a European language, have a European name, or practice a European-centered religion. Somehow it just seems a little late in the game for Mexican Columbus protesters to suddenly "become Indians" after all the bloody conflicts with Amerindians in Mexico and the Southwest over the centuries. Those protesters want us to "Go back to Europe," when some of their own ancestors were among the very worst Spanish imperialists, slave owners, and Catholic supremacists.

The Cherokees put hundreds of thousands of innocent Africans in chains
If someone wants to blame Columbus, then they must have the entire plate! They cannot ignore the establishment, expansion, and mere existence of the United States, the role of the Vatican in American colonialism (Latin America), the fact that 19 out of 20 captured Africans were sold into slavery in Latin America, and much more. How about the African Chieftains and their henchmen who captured people by literally the millions to sell along the West African coast? Maybe it's time to find out who really owned all those slave ships? Also, there were many Arab slavers working along the West African coast. How many people know that the Cherokee Nation was up to their necks in the slave trade? I think that the Columbus protesters, of all races, should be careful of what they ask for.

Where does it end? There have been hundreds of cases such as demands that a grammar school change its name from "George Washington," or for Andrew Jackson's name to be removed from the $20 bill... because they were "racists." Well, are we going to rehash all the history of all other nations too... the vast majority of which were "born in blood"..? What about the Cherokee Nation... are they going to give an apology for their large role in the slave trade? I don't think there were any Latvians, Hungarians, or Greeks bidding on captured Africans... but there sure were Cherokees bidding. Why is that such a secret? How many people realize that many Irish people were sold into slavery in the Americas?