• on a comment on MyDD Civic Literacy Test over 4 years ago

    The Alien and Sedition Acts didn't really tackled immigration though one of the four acts was the Naturalization Act which extended the time required before any immigrant could become a citizen to 14 years. Passed in 1796, three of the four acts were repealed in 1802. Only the Alien Enemies Act remains on the books today.

    The first comprehensive immigration act came later. Post Civil War.

    Well done. A solid A.

  • an abuse of power. A petulant display of arrogance.

    It serves not the national interest. I'm beginning to think we need to have half the Senate elected nationally. That, of course, would require an Amendment. But beyond that, the Senate needs to reform itself.

    It was once a debating for gentlemen (in the classic 18th century sense) but we are not living in the Age of Reason anymore. Ours is an age of irrationality.

    And Richard Shelby's hostage taking of 70 executive nominees is simply inexcusable. The holds can be overcome but look at the process required to do so. Rather than lubricating the wheels of government, this kicks a bucket of sand in our collective faces.

  • on a comment on MyDD Civic Literacy Test over 4 years ago

    I don't remember James Wilson in "1776" the musical. Wasn't it John Dickinson also of Pennsylvania who was portrayed negatively? That would make more sense since Dickinson was steadfastly opposed to independence. Then again, he had a lot to lose as he was perhaps the wealthiest American at the time.

    Edward Rutledge of South Carolina is the other Founder who was portrayed negatively in the musical. He sang the Molasses to Rum song. He at 26 was the youngest to sign the Declaration of Independence. I forget who portrayed him the HBO series John Adams but that portrayal was stunningly brilliant.

    Rutlegde is an odd character. Educated at Oxford, he was opposed to independence but signed the Declaration for the sake of unaminity. He was a staunch defender of Southern planter interests. He led the effort that successful removed from the Declaration of Independence the references that condemned slavery and the slave trade. He did take up arms and was captured by the British and spent most of the war as POW. After the war he was one of the leading advocate for the explusion of loyalists and the confiscation of their property.

    Dickinson did not sign the Declaration of Independence but ironically he was one the staunchest advocates of the Constitution which he did sign writing a series of pamphlets under the pseudonym Fabius.

    Dickinson is also interesting because I think he was only the man to represent two states. He was a delegate from Pennsylvania to Continental Congress but a delegate from Delaware to the Constitutional Convention of 1787. Dickinson College is named in his honor.

    There are a whole number of "secondary' Founding Fathers who deserve greater attention. Dickinson is certainly one of these. His Letters of a Pennsylvania Farmer written in the late 1760s was one of the more eloquent arguments against the British mercantile system and provided an impetus in the rallying against the Stamp Act of 1765.

    Roger Sherman is another Founder who merits greater attention. He was one of those who was self-educated. A cobbler by profession, he became a lawyer and was instrumental in writing the Declaration and the Constitution. His Connecticut Compromise that gave us the Senate and the House of Representatives is viewed by a number of historians as the pivotal moment in the Constitutional Convention.

    Elbridge Gerry had a different path. From Massachusetts, he was overshadowed at the Continental Congress by John Adams. He also a delegate to the Constitutional Convention but refused to sign the document because it did not have a Bill of Rights. He became one of the leading Anti-Federalists and of course lent his name to gerrymandering.

    As for James Wilson, he served on the Committee of Detail that wrote the first draft of the Constitution. The Preamble is his work. Had Wilson's vision prevailed, we would likely be a more democratic country. He was appointed by Washington to the Supreme Court. He also went bankrupt in the Panic of 1796. That landed him in debtor's prison. There were some Wilson notes discovered just last week so we should see his name crop up more in the scholarship.




  • on a comment on MyDD Civic Literacy Test over 4 years ago

    Perhaps I didn't word the question right because I was thinking Yorktown in October 1781 because that's what led the British to sue for peace.

    Ohio has elected the most Presidents directly to the White House but the state with the most native-born Presidents is Virginia though not one since Wilson and no Virginian has been elected directly to the White House since James Monroe though John Tyler ascended to the Presidency after the death of William Henry Harrison who was born in Virginia but elected from Ohio. The devil is in the details.

    Martin Van Buren was the first born after 1776.

    I think I'll work on a quiz for President's day. 43 questions, one for each President.

    So who is the only Iowan to become President?

  • on a comment on MyDD Civic Literacy Test over 4 years ago

    You did very well. Only three are wrong (3, 4 & 22) and one is incomplete. Harrisburg was never a US capital. 

    Most people think Ohio is the state with most Presidents (because it claims to be the birthplace of Presidents) but Virginia tops it. 

    Ohio: Grant, Hayes, Garfield, Harrison (though he was elected from Indiana), McKinley, Taft and Harding. That's seven but Virginia has eight: Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, W.H. Harrison (elected from Ohio), Tyler, Taylor (elected from Louisiana), Wilson (elected from New Jersey).

    So by birth Virginia has sent the most to the White House. Ohio can claim that it has elected the most of its citizens directly to the White House but by birth Virginia holds the title.

    Great job on the electoral system. I think that's an important concept to understand. We have single member districts elected with FPTP system and that we are now experimenting with runoff systems.

    Most impressed with James Wilson. That's a tough one. An amazing display of historical prowess.

    Gerry only served as VP under James Madison. He was the first VP not to run for President. He was one of a very few men who attended both the Second Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention of 1787. The answer to my question lies in this.


  • I more meant that the tide of job destruction has been stemming.

    No doubt, sustained job creation has yet to occur.


  • on a comment on MyDD Civic Literacy Test over 4 years ago

    Grover Cleveland was both the 22nd and the 24th President of the United States. Hence the number of men who served as President is always one less than the current occupant.

  • on a comment on MyDD Civic Literacy Test over 4 years ago

    By my count you got 16/25 right and one partially right.

    Mondale did begin the process of redefining the modern Vice Presidency but the first VP to sit in the Cabinet happened earlier.

    New York has given us Van Buren, Fillmore, Cleveland and two Roosevelts. So that's five which is good enough for third place. Arthur came to the Presidency from New York but he was born in Vermont.  This state has given us seven. It's a bit of a trick question since Presidents born in one state are often elected from another. Lincoln was elected from Illinois but was born in Kentucky.

    Our type of government is a Democratic Republic, but the question was what type of electoral system?

    You got the trick question right. 43 men have served as President because Grover Cleveland is counted twice. Very good.

    New York was the 11th state to ratify the Constitution.

    Pennsylvania sent Benjamin Franklin to the Constitutional Convention. 

    Most impressed that you got Father of the Federal Government right. I thought that would be a hard one. 

    "We The People." Not Jefferson because he did not attend the Constitutional Convention.

    True that gerrymandering comes from Elbridge Gerry but that's not why he is unique.

    On 17 you name 2, there were 6 others.

    Not Ticonderoga though I should re-write that question to final decisive battle (though it actually wasn't the last encounter of the war).

  • This guy shows up now and again but to say that Obama has been engaged to the degree that he showed yesterday is simply not true.

    He needs to show that he is in charge on a sustained basis. He needs to demonstrate that he has a vision for the country. He needs to set clear, definable goals and objectives and take the country there.

    Yesterday was great. He is a talented individual but the force of his convictions need to show up more.

    It may just be a matter of perception but perception does matter and the perception has been that he has been aloof and detached. That has had a political cost.

  • Thanks but now the main entry is missing.

    Shoot me an email since I don't have yours.


  • The increased savings rate is consistent with my thesis that I began to develop a year ago that corporate and consumer behaviour was due for a retrenchment. I'm not surprised.

  • comment on a post Must See TV: Barack Obama's Finest Hour Yet over 4 years ago

    this is absurd. It really is.

    I'm not the most tech savvy person, but I don't have these issues on other blogs so I know it ain't me. The problem is MyDD5.

  • comment on a post Must See TV: Barack Obama's Finest Hour Yet over 4 years ago

    Kyle, the HTML editor has disappeared. And apparently posts can only be so long. The transcript and my concluding remarks have been cut off. Every attempt to add the missing text has failed.

    And the video still won't embed after numerous attempts to embed it.


  • I had two titles for this post that I chose not to use.


    1) A Bolshevik Among Mensheviks.


    2) Look Ma, No Teleprompter.


    I chose to be a bit more serious.

  • comment on a post Must See TV: Barack Obama's Finest Hour Yet over 4 years ago

    is a cumbersome chore. It needs an overhaul. Somehow the video won't embed.


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