The Greater Myth America Pageant

14 Oct

Boston Tea Party 1773
Myth America: That England planned to levy the same ruinous taxation on America they had placed on Ireland. Anathema!, cried our Founders. The Colonies enjoyed the greatest per capita income in the world at the time and paid the lowest taxes. Myth 2: That Revolution would insure these perks for the Colonies. “DON’T TREAD ON ME

Monticello, VA 1803
Myth America: That President Jefferson could, with impunity, bypass Congress and spend big bucks we didn’t have ( even if it was a really good deal?) and still govern a democratic republic. Myth 2: That this event didn’t cause the first ‘Money Panic’ in 1819. Myth 3: That it was not the Louisiana Purchase and old war debt at fault, heavens no; the bankers caused it all. “Accrocher les banquiers.” (hang the bankers)

Army camp on the Rio Grande 1846
Myth America: That having kicked the British army back up to Canada and driven those pesky Seminoles into the Florida swamps, twice; we were ready for the bigger game. Myth 2: That those backward Mexicans should not have all that luscious California real estate when, manifestly, it should be ours. “Come and take it”

Charleston SC 1860
Myth America: That economic prosperity and social stability were linked to slavery and the plantation system, and that states rights were being threatened by the federal government. Intolerable! Myth 2: That creation of a separate nation by secession was the only solution to this perception. “one rebel can lick three Yankees”

Havana Cuba 1898
Myth America: That Spain was responsible for the destruction of battleship Maine because we were aiding Cuba in its quest for independence. Curses on those Dons! Myth 2: That we had no interest whatsoever in establishing an overseas Empire despite acquisition of Puerto Rico, Guam and the Philippine Islands. No way, Jose. “Remember the Maine!”

Somewhere in France 1919
Myth America: That we had made the world safe for democracy by winning the war against the Central Powers. Myth 2: The fact that Britain, France and Russia each lost over one million soldiers notwithstanding, we did it. Over there! Hip, Hip Hooray. “He kept us out of war”

Atlantic City 1921
Myth America: That the Miss America Contest is not held when it is to extend the holiday season past Labor Day. (Be sure to see the amazing Diving Horse leap from the Steel Pier into the ocean) “Here she is, Miss America”

Wall Street 1929
Myth America: That having forty of every one hundred US dollars owned by one per cent of individuals in no way caused the Great Depression. Myth 2: That the speculative boom in stocks, bonds and assets on credit in the twenties was not caused by Federal Reserve policy. Psst, we have a bridge to sell you. “Eat the rich”

Pearl Harbor, Oahu 1941
Myth America: That “slant eyes” prevented the Japanese from becoming skilled pilots. Myth 2: That we won the war conveniently ignoring the fact that the Soviets had broken the back of the Nazi Wehrmacht years before D-Day. “Remember Pearl Harbor”

Foggy Bottom 1963
Myth America: That the take over of South Viet Nam by Ho Chi Minh would lead to a “domino” effect and all of Southeast Asia would topple. Ho did it; it didn’t. Myth 2: That a handful of US advisors could whip the ARVN forces into shape and trounce the Viet Cong. “Hell no, we won’t go”

Baghdad 2003
Myth America: That Saddam Hussein and his weapons of mass destruction were a threat to our survival. Myth 2: That the end to major combat operations where brought to a close on May 1, 2003. “Mission accomplished”

Kobani, Syria 2014
Myth America: That bombings alone, despite all historical experience, would win against ISIS in Iraq, Syria or anywhere. Slow learners? “Companions square”


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