Tuesday, 18 December 2012

It is a Curious Game: Politics

South Carolina had an interesting situation develop.  Senator DeMint decided to step down...now.  He wasn't going to wait around....he had this one big opportunity to take the leadership of the Heritage Foundation (a right-wing conservative group).

The Governor of South Carolina has this great opportunity.  She thinks about for a week or two, and picks black Representative Tim Scott....who is a big name within Tea Party circles.  Folks in South Carolina get pumped up about the way that this has played out so far.

But then you start to think....if Representative Tim Scott stands down to take the new Senator job.....there's another chance for the Governor to pick a temp to stand as Representative until a special election is held.  Some folks think that she might pick Ms Sanford (the former wife of Governor Mark Sanford).

The election process?  It takes around five months, and whoever is the temp might have an upper hand.

If you remember former Gov Mark Sanford....he's the guy who said he was on vacation, but in reality....he was with a lusty Argentine gal (not his wife).

Strangely enough....yesterday, Mark Sanford came out and hinted that he might be thinking about running.  Course, if his wife was the other Republican contender.....it might create a pretty interesting race.

It'd be hard to find a place other than South Carolina where politics is talked about on a hour-by-hour basis these days.

Reflection of the Old Days

When I was a kid (1972 for example)....if you had come around and gotten everyone hyper over security in the school, we would have been in a daze for about an hour or two.

Protocol's?  Some guy from the county board would likely have to come out and explain the word to both the teachers and students.

We had two vets on the teaching staff.  One guy was a WWII vet, who claimed to have taken down a bunch of Japanese guys in the war.  He was a bit of a nut, but I imagine that he could handle a .45 if necessary.  The other guy was a Nam vet and I'm pretty confident in saying that he'd handle a .45-caliber.

The bus drivers?  I'd take a humble guess and say they'd all have double-barreled twelve-gauge shotguns by their left side....ready to swing them around at any character acting crazy.

Every single boy in the school likely had a three-inch knife in their pocket and could have come out with a blade in less than eight seconds.  

From the community?  There would have been forty folks at the front door of the school within five minutes....who had various weapons in their cars or homes.  They would have even beat the cops to the front door.

Simpler times.....perhaps.

A Moment of History

I love history....mostly because so much of it has been forgotten, and you're shocked when you start to stumble across unusual stories.

On a fairly cold day in February of 1780....some Revolutionary War 'vet' (with PTSD obviously), got into a fit and broke into the bedroom of his new boss.  He whacked the boss and his wife with a club until they were dead.  After that, he burned down the house....with the bosses three grand-kids inside the house.  The guy hid out for almost a week before the 'cops' found him.  The best that the authorities could dish out was forty lashes, and a hanging.  For all practical purposes, this was the first reported mass murder in US history.

In the mid-1930s.....there was this Filipino guy living up in Seattle.  He went into a fit over money that was stolen (or he thought it was stolen).  Julian Marcelino ended up killing six folks that evening....most of which were just folks on the street that he bumped into.  Another fifteen folks were knifed and luckily survived.  The cops easily caught him....but then the Seattle crowd went through various phases of declaring Julian insane.  Roughly three years later, they ended up putting him up for parole, with the condition that he leave the US.  Julian left, and ended up quickly in the Philippines.  Curiously, he ended up with the Philippine militia, survived the Bataan Death March, and history indicates that he killed an awful lot of Japanese characters who invaded his island country.

Around 1915, there was this guy from Georgia who got into real estate deals, and found himself screwed at some point.  In a fit of rage down in Brunswick  Georgia.....he ended up shooting seven guys dead with a newer version automatic shotgun, and wounding 32 other folks.  He was shot dead by one of the bystanders who was simply carrying a gun....course, without the concealed permit of today.

The truth is that you can dig around and find hundreds of examples where a guy killed three to a dozen folks in this land between the two coasts.  We may have ventured out in the past two decades to some higher numbers.....but we've had people on the rampage for two hundred years.  We've found lots of ways to let crazy folks slide by because they were insane.  In some cases, we've found ways to lynch guy with barely any evidence because the locals demanded it.

Schools, malls, bars, churches and public places have been popular places for the past two hundred years to murder folks.  Nothing new here.....unless you watch the news media and believe everything they say.