2.28.2017 Day in History

vaccine medicine doctor dr syringe drugsFebruary 28th marks Rare Diseases Day in non-leap years, and always represents World Tailors Day, while India commemorates its National Science Day on this date; when the hunters and tribal peoples of Europe were still barely into the Bronze Age, twenty-two hundred nineteen years ago, China’s first Han emperor Gaozu held his coronation and initiated four centuries of dynastic rule; fourteen hundred forty-eight years afterward, in 1246 CE, not quite half a world away, in the Iberian Peninsula, the early stages of Spain’s Christian Reconquista unfolded with a Castilian victory at the Siege of Jaén against the Taifa of that theretofore Islamic outpost; four hundred ninety-two years in advance of this exact passing day, the mass-murdering ‘conqueror’ Hernan Cortes oversaw the execution of Cuauhtemoc, a homicide that he had planned and orchestrated in keeping with Spanish imperial goals and protocols; eight years beyond that chilling act, in 1533 back in Western Europe, the baby boy came bounding into the world who would grow into the redoubtable intelligence and scathing penslinger, Michel de Montaigne; one year more than a quarter millennium later, in 1784, the beloved John Wesley first chartered a Methodist Church; a hundred ninety years back, a pair of local scions and builders in Maryland impacted the economic development of early America when they incorporated the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad; two decades further along, in 1847, California became at least till now irretrievably American when U.S. forces crushed Spanish defenders at the Battle of the Sacramento River; just two years forward from that instant, in 1849, the steamboat that took nearly a hundred sixty days to sail round South America from bridge san francisco city nature bridge golden gateNew York powered into San Francisco Bay, confirming the first regular ship connections between the East and West Coasts of the United States; another eighteen years subsequently, in 1867, the United States indulged its distrust of and distaste for Catholic creeds by ending diplomatic relations with ‘the Holy See,’ a suspension of connection that lasted till the second Reagan administration, 1984; in a contrasting sort of imperial thrust a thousand ninety-six days onward in time and space, in 1870, the Ottoman Empire’s Sultanate designated the Bulgarian Balkans as an Islamic Exarchate of Turkey; marking this as a benchmark day in the annals of corporate rule, a decade and a half thereafter, in 1885, a key subsidiary of Bell Telephone came into being in New York as its own outfit, the American Telephone and Telegraph Company; nine years on the dot still more proximate to the present pass, in 1894, the male infant was born who would soon enough enchant audiences as the writer and performer and producer, Ben Hecht; three additional years on the temporal arc, in 1897, maybe eight thousand miles South and East, French forces overthrew the last queen of Madagascar, Ranavalona, and assumed imperial command over the African island that has served as an outpost for South Asia in Africa itself; the very next year, in 1898, the Supreme Court of the United States found constitutional a law that limited Utah’s mine and smelter workers’ hours to eight a day; another three year stretch in the direction of today, in 1901, the baby boy opened his eyes who would rise as the champion of science and knowledge and peace, Linus Pauling; a mere two years nearer to the here and now, in 1903, an infant boy emerged from his hollywood california film media moviemother en route to a life as the force of nature and film, Vincente Minnelli; a dozen years along the road to today, in 1915, plus a ‘leap day’ in addition, South Carolina passed a compulsory school attendance law that effected eliminating child labor in mills and mines prior to the youngster’s fourteenth birthday; the very next year exactly, in 1916, the dark and daunting storyteller and thinker Henry James breathed his last; six years henceforth, in 1922, England unilaterally ended its ‘protectorate’ over Egypt and declared its colony’s putative ‘independence’ from London’s sway; taking immediate political advantage of the serendipitous disaster of the Reichstag fire, Hitler’s new government immediately announced the passage of the Reichstag Fire Decree the very next day, exactly eleven years beyond England’s ‘generosity’ to Cairo, in 1933; two years farther down the pike, in 1935, a DuPont scientist confirmed a formula for a manmade compound, which as nylon revolutionized many industries; another three years on time’s relentless march, across the continent in 1938, Chines Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union members initiated what would become a successful 120 day strike for better wages and conditions in their factory and storefront positions; just shy of a decade on the way to today, in 1947, Chinese Nationalists on Taiwan savagely attacked protests of the reactionary regime, in the process killing tens of thousands of civilians; a single additional solar cycle in the general direction of now, in 1948, police murder in the British colonial capitol of Accra killed three former imperial soldiers who were protesting for promised pensions, the upshot of which was a week of mayhem and uprising that lay the basis for the emergence of an erstwhile independent Ghana from the British imperial asset of the Gold Coast; a half decade even closer to the current context, in 1953, scientists James Watson and Francis Crick communicated to friends that they had untangled the structure and chemistry of the stuff-of-life, the DNA molecule, and the male infant entered our midst who would mature as the Nobel Prize winning establishment economist, Paul Krugman; just a year hence, in 1954, factories released the first color television sets that embodied National Televsions Systems Committee

Braun HF 1
Braun HF 1

standards; a further five years en route to today’s light and air, in 1959, one of America’s hoped-for ‘spy satellites, Discover 1, lifted off from the launchpad only to fail to achieve the polar orbit that its handlers had intended it to reach; an eight year interlude more on track for today, in 1967, the denizen of ruling class cultural control, Henry Luce, came to the point of his personal final edition; a half decade yet later on, in 1972, representatives of the U.S. and China inaugurated the ‘New World Order’ with their signatures on the Shanghai Communique; eleven years further down the road, in 1983, the popular television show, M*A*S*H broadcast its final episode, which, with well over a hundred million viewers, was the most watched original programming in TV history; meanwhile, three years subsequent to that cultural crossroads in 1986, South African workers displayed the sort of international solidarity on which working class power, and human survival, likely depend, walking off their jobs in protest at the layoff of 450 union members in New Jersey who worked for the same multinational conglomerate as the Elandsfontein laborers seven thousand miles to the South and East, and a likely fascist assassin blew away the liberal social democratic Prime Minister of Sweden, Olof Palme; seven years in even greater proximity to the present point in time and space, in 1993, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms stormtroopers initiated a bloody intervention at the Branch Davidian religious compound near

CC BY-SA by La Petite Claudine

Waco, Texas when they tried to serve a warrant to arrest David Koresh, resulting in the deaths of nine police and church members on that day and a nearly three month siege that ended with fiery murder on a much larger scale; just two further turns around the solar center afterward, in 1998, Serbian police four thousand miles to the East began an even larger and bloodier intervention against the CIA-backed Kosovo Liberation Army; four years still later, in 2002, another excrescence of state-involved ‘religious violence’ erupted in India’s Gujarat region, in an outbreak of mass killing in the context of riotous uprising in well over 150 Muslims died; seven hundred thirty days past that carnage, in 2004, a quieter and more natural reaping transpired when historian and Librarian of Congress Daniel J. Boorstin breathed his last at the exact same time that, around the world, upwards of one million Taiwanese joined hands, literally, to form a five hundred kilometer long chain to commemorate the slaughter by American-supported soldiers and police of more than thirty thousand ancestors and friends on the same day fifty-seven years previously; three years more on the temporal road, in 2007, the travels of establishment historian and critic Arthur M. Schlesinger formally ended; seven years farther in the direction of our own day, just three years past in 2014, ninety-eight year old mathematician and civil rights and social justice advocate Lee Lorch lived out his final day.