"If at age 20 you are a conservative then you have no heart. If at age 30 you are a liberal then you have no brains."
Sir Winston Churchill

Obama obviously knows very little about economics, specifically that "Society stagnates when independent productive achievers begin to be socially demonized and even punished for their accomplishments." This dilemma fogs Obama's reality. To him, accepting this truth is a "false choice", his answer to things he doesn't understand. And by the way... where is John Galt?

Monday, November 18, 2013


The idea for the National Cemetery was the brainchild of Theodore Dimon, Deputy State Agent for the Governor of New York, Horatio Seymour.  Dimon and his superior had been sent to the battlefield in the summer of 1863 to retrieve the New York dead which accounted for over 25% of all the Union casualties of the great battle in south central Pennsylvania.  Fearing the expense  of such an endeavor while concerned over the rapidly deteriorating condition of the corpses, Dimon took the idea to David Wills the State Agent to Pennsylvania Governor Andrew Gregg Curtin who immediately saw the political and economic advantage of  a National Cemetery where people would come and mourn and spend money for years to come
Wills began the task of buying the land and securing the approval of the other 18 state Governors whose troops  fought and died there for the Union.  The battlefield had been a health and sanitary disaster after the guns had gone silent.  Corpses from both sides had been hurriedly buried in shallow trenches and pits and the humid summer heat had caused the bodies to swell and bloat until parts of the remains broke through the surface where it was recorded that in several incidences, the hogs took to rooting at the bodies.
The smell had been overpowering and the mostly Dutch inhabitants of Adams County took to sealing their windows and doors to escape the stench even if it meant suffocating in the oppressive heat.

The retreating Rebels had sacked the town and surrounding farms in both Adams and  neighboring York County, leaving the populace  near destitute.  Both armies had left over 21,000 wounded men to be cared for under the most primitive of conditions and a portion of the citizenry began to charge for water and bread and other necessities of life earning them the opprobrium for their insensitive greed, of the New York Times and then the entire nation.  Over 14% of the wounded were to die there in the swelter of the summer.
But all that began to fade as David Wills proceeded apace to make the National Cemetery a reality.  The land was purchased for $2,475.87 on Cemetery Hill between the Taneytown Road and the Baltimore Pike.
In October Wills advertised for workers to exhume and rebury the dead in the new cemetery. This would go on through the dedication and on into December.  He named Ward Hill Lamon, a friend of the President and the Marshal of the District of Columbia to be the Marshal for the dedication and he invited  Edward Everett, former Secretary of State, President of Harvard,  Massachusetts Governor and the man thought the greatest orator in the land, to give the keynote address. 
The first date selected was in late October but Everett feared he could not be ready for so august an occasion by that time so the dedication was moved back to November the 19th.
The President of the United States was invited as almost an afterthought to do the actual dedication with the clear understanding that Everett was the headliner and main attraction.  Still he wanted to say something fitting but in his words "short...short...short, since the battle in his mind had now merged .with two other great events...the fall of Vicksburg and the 87th anniversary of the founding of the nation.  The struggle had therefore been transformed into something more than significant...  It had become prophetic.
It had always not been so with the sad eyed, tall, craggy President who had aged twenty years in just three.  He had been initially distraught when Meade had failed to pursue Robert E. Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia and end the war with a decisive victory at Union Mills...but with time he had come to accept that the war would only end when the spirit of the southern brothers turned enemies would be broken beyond repair.
On November 18th, he bordered a special train with a retinue that included three cabinet secretaries, his two personal secretaries, the Marine Corps Band and two Ambassadors among others. and proceeded to the small Pennsylvania town where he stayed with David Mills for the night.  The next day he he awoke to a gorgeous Indian summer day, put on his new black silk top hat  and mounted a Chestnut Bay horse to ride to the ceremonies.  It took an hour to get through the crowds but eventually the program began with music and convocations and finally a 13,000 oration from Everett which no one remembers today.  The President grateful for its conclusion, bounded up from his chair to congratulate the main speaker and forgetting that Ward Hill Lamon was supposed to introduce him launched into his remarks in his thin voice tinged with a western accent and in so doing gave the nation and posterity, 272 words that will echo down through the ages.  He spoke thus
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this  continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the  proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or  any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are  met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a  portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave  their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper  that we should do this. But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate --
 we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who
 struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add
 or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say
 here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living,
 rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who
 fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be
 here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these
 honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they
 gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve
 that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under
 God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the
 people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
The 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address will be celebrated at Gettysburg on Tuesday.  The  President of the United States  has declined to attend and has given the public no reason for his decision.

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