Month: August 2016

1…. 2… 3!

Americans are always arguing what the Founding Fathers “really meant” when they wrote the Constitution. Sadly, only a very small percent of Americans has the cranial capacity, the specific historical background, and the broad knowledge of 18th century semantics and legal issues to even make an educated guess. However, ignorance and opinion run strong in the American bloodline. So this has never stopped anyone from taking a shot at their version of any Amendment. To this end it is remarkable that you can visit any bar, from Baton Rouge to Seattle, and probably never encounter two drunken idiots arguing...

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17% of People have Kissed a Dead Girl from the mid-19th Century and Why You Should too!

In mid-19th century Paris a dead young girl was pulled from the river Seine. Her body showed no signs of distress or violence so the cause of death was listed as suicide. As was the practice in those days, unidentified bodies were displayed at the morgue in the hopes they would be identified. A mortician was transfixed with this particular girl’s beauty and innocence and made a clay death-mask for her. Yes, this part is a little creepy. By the end of the century, replicas of the death-mask began showing up in shops. Artists and writers of the Belle Époque were...

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The Final Years of Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand was born in Russia in 1905 she immigrated to the US in 1925. she struggled in the beginning as a writer but built herself up to be the famous writer of Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead. Her work contains strong themes about taking what you deserve, rugged individualism and the pride you feel from conquering the weak. Here work developed into the philosophy Objectivism a belief in putting yourself before others. Her work is followed by libertarians, strong Conservatives, and everyday run of the mill assholes. Before we get to her later life lets take a look...

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Operation Mockingbird

Operation Mockingbird Most people know not to take conspiracy theorists too seriously; most of their ideas are just downright crazy. Every once in a while, however, they get it right. It is interesting to examine how soon those conspiracies are forgotten by the public. In the 1950s a CIA operation called Operation Mockingbird (OM) was launched by the CIA. The objective of OM was to influence the media. The method was to recruit or plant journalists into leading American media outlets to express CIA points of view as well as fund some smaller cultural groups and magazines. In the beginning the program...

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Those Pagan Days

Life, as far was we know, needs water, chemicals and an energy source to exist. This is according to the best knowledge of Science. Religion’s existence, on the other hand, needs only ignorance and a monopoly on the truth. As with life, the more of these necessary components, the better. That is why I have always found it odd that the names for the days of the week have remained true to their Pagan origins. This seems like something that the Church would have put an end to at some point during then 1000 years it has dominated European...

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Some Notes on the Middle Finger

We can trace the use of the middle finger way back to ancient Greece. This is important to know if you are time traveling in the West and cannot speak the local language. This symbol representing the phallus has carried the same meaning through most of Western time and culture.  One slight variation on the gesture would be the extention of the thumb, which means in some areas “also up your bum” In Greek theater it was called the katapygon. The gesture was used mostly in comedy when one character would give it to another character to suggest he was...

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FDR Played by the DNC

There has been a lot of argument recently about Trump’s slogan to “Make America Great Again!”. Much of this discussion surrounds the definition of “Great”. Is the U.S. not still “Great”, Was it ever “Great”. Exactly when did it stop being “Great”. There is no real answer. There are, however, moments in history when Great things were done. One of these happened back in the early 1930’s, a time that is now know as the end of the Great Depression. A time when rampant poverty kept most Americans balancing precariously on the brink of hope and despair. At the...

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Freudian Trumpathon

Why does Donald Trump keep making cringe-worthy statements that can only hurt his polling numbers? A Freudian model would suggest that he lacks a balancing superego. Or that his ego is incapable of filtering out the inside voice of his id? It could be that Donald is 100% id, which would at least explain the hair. It is to this line of Freudian thought that the majority people seem to adhere. The alternative explanation (too terrifying for most to comprehend) is either blocked by denial or being subconsciously repressed: The truth may be that Donald Trump is a tactical...

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Toy Soldiers are Good (Again)

This article is just about toy soldiers and for the sake of brevity ignores the sub-genres of modelling, collecting and action figures. Toy soldiers have brought joy to kids since the time of the Pharaohs. Originally these toys were made from wood, stone or clay. The very wealthy could afford metals like tin or lead (or gold for the 1%). They were historically crafted by hand, and it wasn’t until the late 18th century that toy soldiers were first mass-produced. Companies like Mignot (France) and Heyde (Germany) were instrumental in this early mass production. But these lead, hand painted...

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Culture Cheese

Europe is the cradle of Western society and, like it or not, the mold by which all modern culture is judged. From the ruins of Athens to the fjords of Scandinavia Europe is full of diversity. Language, culture, nature, philosophy, religion, architecture, politics…etc. The rest of the world pretends to love to hate European diversity while doing their best to imitate it (without appearing to do so). There is one thing that screams superior diversity. The poignant nightmare of the lactose intolerant everywhere…. Cheese. Cheese makes Europe the true cradle of Human Culture. Sorry China, Mesopotamia, India….. Maybe if...

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The Effervescent Life of George P. Burdell

Few people have more accomplished more than George P. Burdell. He holds every undergraduate degree offered by Georgia Tech. He was a lettered basketball player.  He flew 12 missions in a B52 bomber in WWII with the 8th Air Force. And he has been married to Ramona Cartwright for 60 years. George was a board member of Mad magazine from 1969 until 1981. In 2000 he was an alternate delegate to the DNC for the state of Georgia. In 2001 he held 57% of the vote to be Time magazine’s person of the year until he was disqualified and replaced by George W. Bush....

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* The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and most probably, but do not necessarily, reflect the position of Word151.

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