A Thought for the Day
That the tongue is the body’s strongest muscle should surprise no one who pays even a modicum of attention to material reality: after all, the communication function’s development, which without possible refutation marks a key aspect of Homo Sapiens hegemony, corresponds here on our fair planet with the evolution of a larynx to create sound and a lingual organ to give that aural capacity many examples of infinitude in the languages of humanity; the allure of speech in this context of dexterous strength should surprise no one, nor should the equally—and some would say more—compelling quality of the many varieties of kissing that the tongue can manifest, truly giving our mouth’s central motor such multifarious mellifluous mastery, ample aptitude, and monumental muscularity as to make it one of the prime movers of the human condition.
Quote of the Day
ALL THIS IS A DREAM.
Still examine it by a few experiments. Nothing is too wonderful to be true, if it be consistent with the laws of nature
; and in such things as these, experiment is the best test of such consistency.
- Laboratory journal entry #10,040 (19 March 1849); published in The Life and Letters of Faraday (1870) Vol. II, edited by Henry Bence Jones , p. 248. This has sometimes been quoted partially as “Nothing is too wonderful to be true,” and can be seen engraved above the doorway of the south entrance to the Humanities Building at UCLA in Los Angeles, California.  Michael Faraday
This Day in History
Today, Paris and a significant swath of the rest of the world commemorate French citizens’ and allied soldiers’ liberation of the city from the Nazis; in Italy, one thousand, nine hundred and thirty-eight years back, Roman historian Pliny-the-elder died; two hundred forty-six years subsequently, in 325, the first Council of Nicaea ended, placing control of the development of Catholicism squarely in centralized hands, using doctrinal matters to marginalize critics of such choices; four hundred eight years prior to the present pass, Galileo Galilei demonstrated his telescope for the first time to legislators in Venice; twenty-one years afterward, in 1630, around the world in what is now Sri Lanka, Portuguese forces experienced a setback in colonization plans with a defeat at the hands of fighters from the Kingdom of Kandy; MORE HERE
two hundred forty-one annual transits ahead of the here and now, English thinker David Hume had his final empirically verifiable living experience; forty-nine years subsequently, in 1825, Uruguay declared independence from Brazil; three years further down the road, in 1828, the baby boy who would become Bret Harte, American author of both Westerns and poetry, came into the world; seven years past that conjunction in 1835, the New York Sun demonstrated both the power of journalism and the human longing for extraterrestrial analogs of ourselves with the publication of the Great Moon Hoax; one hundred forty years ago, English scientist Michael Faraday died; six years hence, in 1883, Vietnam and France signed a treaty that declared a French protectorate over Annam and Tonkin; eleven years beyond that point, in 1894, a Japanese scientist discovered the microbe responsible for Bubonic Plague and published his discovery in the British journal, The Lancet; six years later still, in 1900, German philosopher and pundit Friedrich Nietzsche died; eight years even nearer to now, in 1908, French physicist Henri Becquerel died; four years henceforth, in 1912, the Chinese Nationalist Party Kuomintang came into existence; seven hundred and thirty days afterward, in 1914, German soldiers deliberately attacked the Catholic University Library in Leuven, Belgium, destroying hundreds of thousands of one-of-a-kind ancient volumes and manuscripts; two more years further along time’s path, in 1916, the U.S. National Park Service came into being; another four years after that juncture, in 1920, the early Soviet attempt to take over part of Poland ended in the Red Army’s defeat at Warsaw; three hundred sixty-five days later, in 1921, West Virginia miners asserted their rights against local authorities and mine-company ‘police’ in the first skirmishes of the Battle of Blair Mountain; two years after that moment in time, in 1923, a male infant came along in Colombia whose fate was to be the widely read and popular author and critic, Alvaro Mutîs; seventy-eight years before the present pass, England and Poland declared an alliance of mutual protection, which would in less than ten days see the beginning of World War Two; half a decade hence, in 1944,partisans and allied soldiers completed the liberation of Paris; a year yet closer to the current context, in 1945, Chinese Communists assassinated U.S. Office of Strategic Services agent, and God-fearing Christian, John Birch, whose eponymous society now espouses imperialist reaction as a rational course for U.S. policy; in its first televised hearings, three years after that, in 1948, the House Un-American Activities Committee confronted Alger Hiss with Whitaker Chambers en route to the former Assistant Secretary of State’s perjury conviction; another year onward, in 1949, the boy infants who were to grow into Kiss sensation Gene Simmons and United Kingdom literary genius Martin Amis were both born; one year closer still to the current state of affairs, in 1950, the country’s first ReDemoPubliCratiCan President, Harry Truman, ordered the Army to seize control of the nation’s railroads in order to avert and break a threatened strike; four years down the road from that day, in 1954, the baby boy drew first breath who would sing and write as the rock star, Elvis Costello; two years thereafter, in 1956, noted thinker and sexologist Alfred Kinsey passed away; five years henceforth, in 1961, after sharp unrest in part fostered by U.S. interests, the President of Brazil resigned, laying the basis for upheaval that led two and a half years later to a military coup; fifteen years later, in 1976, the Swedish Nobel Literary Laureate Eyvind Johnson breathed his last; thirty-three years ago, thinker and storyteller Gore Vidal died; seven years afterward, in 1991, Linus Torvalds released the first version of open-source operating system Linux, and the siege of Vukovar began in what ended up being the dissolution of Yugoslavia; six years subsequently, in 1997, a former premier of East Germany faced a conviction for a ‘shoot-to-kill’ policy at the Berlin Wall, and former Supreme Court Justice Lewis Powell died; eight years back, Ted Kennedy died; three years later, in 2012, spacecraft Voyager One entered interstellar space, the first human artifact to reach so far from home.
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Interesting People Places Things of Note
DOD Student Recruitment Protocols
A Truth Out post that looks at how the Department of Defense recruits new members: “Ominous developments in three states this summer — Oregon, Texas, New Jersey, and one city — Chicago, provide a glimpse into the Pentagon’s new playbook to recruit soldiers from high schools across the country. In brief, the military has been engaged in a robust lobbying campaign to lower academic standards to make it easier to recruit youth. ”
CIA Torture Litigation Results
A Shadowproof look at a recent lawsuit against the CIA due to torture practices: ““This is a historic day for our clients and all who seek accountability for torture,” declared ACLU attorney Dror Ladin. “The court’s ruling means that for the first time, individuals responsible for the brutal and unlawful CIA torture program will face meaningful legal accountability for what they did. Our clients have waited a long time for justice.”
In reviewing the facts, Quackenbush noted [PDF] Mitchell and Jessen were involved in “actual interrogations of certain individuals, including Rahman, which occurred in foreign, secret, locations.”
General Past & Present Issues
Hiroshima Must-Read Analysis
An Information Clearing House post that is very necessary for all who cling to the outmoded idea of the necessity of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki attacks: “ Seventy years later, it’s still deeply embedded in public memory and school textbooks, despite an ever-growing pile of evidence that contradicts it. Perhaps it’s time, so many decades into the age of apocalyptic peril, to review the American apologia for nuclear weapons — the argument in their defense — that ensured we would never have to say we’re sorry.”