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SOCIAL STUDIES DIARY

The Inauguration

The inauguration of 2021 reminds me of the historical events that ended the first Athenian democracy. The Athenians were a democracy and they eventually were at war with the Spartans (conservatives). To protect Athens from the Spartans the Athenians build a huge wall system around Athens that reached all the way to the port of Piraeus. Sparta controlled the hinder land with a strong land army, while Athen turned to form the Delian League, which at first comprised of a volunteered alliance cities and islands. In general, the Athens were fearful of fighting the Spartans, the Athenian attempted to become a great naval power. Because of the war, the Athenians moved the treasury from Delos to Athens and refused to allow their former allies to withdraw from the Delian League. They, thereby, turned from a democracy to totalitarians force, once they gained power, But the foolish leaders of the democracy overreached as they attempted to defeat Sparta by sea and the main Athenian fleet was totally destroyed in attempting to take the Sicilian city of Syracuse, which was a colony of the Corinthians. The Athenians clung to the claim of being a democracy, but they punished anyone that stood up against their outrageous decision making and ordered the execution of Socrates. If interested see my book: City-State Civism in Ancient Athen. History does not repeat itself, but there are some interesting parallels.

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The Washington Tea Party

 

The Washington Tea Party

 

 

By

 

 

Thomas L. Dynneson

 

It was the sixth of January of 2021

A new day of infamy now can be sung

 

The scene of crime is now etched in the blood

Of a woman veteran whom the establishment police shot dead

 

I watched it all on the tely on that miserable day

The scene was Washington where a rally was under way

 

The news was gloomy and not about to go away

The cause of the ruckus was an election that was in play

 

It all came to a head on January the sixth, according to plan

A required Constitutional day as we all understand

 

The scene turned chaotic in the twinkle of an eye

As up the hill the protesters did fly

 

They scaled the walls and forced open the doors

They entered the halls and the chamber floors

 

The police were too weak to resist the angry flow

They fell back in alarm and let them all go

The protesters occupied offices and they sat at the desks in a row

They occupied the chamber, drove out scammers who now had to go

 

Was this a cleansing or was it a crime?

The answer lies in future and will take some time

 

Some say it's obvious that this is a swamp

Full of the greedy who trample and romp

 

Arrogant asses who make their own deals

When it comes to elections, it no different from other things they steal

 

Then came a shot that punctuated this scene as never before

They murdered a veteran who served us in war

 

They shot her in cold blood as she lay on the floor

Now the masked deception has come to the fore

 

Democracy has a limited life span

It can survive for a while as best it can

 

But when it's over, it does not die with a great shout

It dies with whimper when the light of liberty burns out 

 

The Professor

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Global Warming

Global Warming and the Skating Rink

 

By

 

Thomas L. Dynneson

 

 

Global Warming

 

If the cold weather is getting you down

Remember global warming is coming around

 

Al Gore will tell what you should do

He has invented something called the stay at home flu

 

If it's cold and cloudy and not so nice

The world is spinning on very thin ice

 

Global warming means winter is no more

Put on your shorts and open the front door

 

Have some ice tea with lemon or lime

Whining out loud or online is a political crime

 

Turn off your furnace and sit on the deck

Global warming is here, so what the heck

 

Global warming will start your day by taking a hike

Stop driving that gas hog and take your bike

 

If you're late and can't get up today just send a fax and continue  to relax

Kick back and live off the rich man's new wealth tax

 

This is the new age that was promised, an age that will meet your every need

Just plant a garden with free government seed and pay you taxes to satisfy government greed

 

Sigh up for a mortgage that you do not have to pay

If you go broke, no problem as this is a new day

 

We're all wards of the golden new state

If you need money just hold out a plate

 

All moral issues are settled by polls

Big brother is watching and is setting the goals

 

Religion is as dead as yesterday's news

Rock and roll will settle your blues

 

Dishonor your parents, as they really are dumb

When you're in trouble just suck your thumb

 

History means nothing to the youth of today

They are determined to have it their way

 

Climate change is the way of the new slating rink

After all, the world in America is about to sink

 

    The Professor

 

          

 

 

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The Blizzard

The Blizzard

 

by

 

Thomas L. Dynneson

 

 

The Blizzard

 

December came in its usual way

The weather was temperate, almost like May

 

The wind in the morning was calm, but a little unclear

By noon the changes began to appear

 

To the northwest black clouds darkened the sky

The winds picked-up and leaves flew by

 

Lights in the windows began to show

A light rain had changed to snow

 

The winds grew stronger and bent the boughs

A call was made to man the snowplows

 

Waves of snow blew all around

The city grew silent with hardly a sound

 

Windows iced over with hardly a view of the street

The snow splattered the window like concrete

 

Mothers and children gathered indoors

Little tots played with their toys on the floors

 

Men gathered their thoughts about the past

Wondering how long this weather could last

 

Cars flew flags, as the snow grew high

Unseen cars at intersections drove by

 

The streets grew narrow when the snowplows came

No two cars could pass on a lane

 

Winter in Minnesota might seem insane

But people love it never the same

 

The Professor

 

 

 

 

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Olive the Noodle Eating Dog

Olive the Noodle Eating Dog

 

by

 

Thomas L. Dynneson

 

T'was the day before Christmas and the world was at rest Olive was up around patrolling the house.

 

Phil was in the kitchen and was ready to cook one of our favorites dishes a pot of traditional noodles done by the book.

 

The ingredients were simple so not much to do, they included a few eggs, salt, flour and turkey broth in a cup or two.

 

Now Olive has a long reach. She loves the family and is easy to teach.

 

She is a bit of tall girl, maybe six foot tall, if she should stand up against you or the kitchen wall.

 

Olive is polite and does what she is told, comes when you whistle even when it's cold.

 

In the kitchen Phil was rolling out a great measure of dough soon to be dried and cooked in a kettle on the new stove.

 

Before long the noodles were cut and could be dried, they were placed on four large pans and were set aside.

 

Lindie said to Philip "let's tale a ride to the store, there is nothing to hide and Olive will guard the dish that you pride".

 

After an hour we retuned to the house, we noticed that Olive was still as a mouse. Oh what a good girl we all proclaimed! She's such a lady and quite a good dame never to be blamed!

 

Then from the kitchen I heard quite a shout, it came from Phil who was looking about. "Where are my noodles my favorite dish!" "There not in the kitchen, there not in the hall, there not on the table or out in the hall!"

 

The noodles are in the dining room " I seem to recall! Oh good! called Phil, I'll hide them away. Silence then fell over the house you might say.

 

Four pans of noodles were gone in a twinkling one long noodle was all that was left. Lindy exclaimed it must be a robber or a thief from the street. It couldn't be Olive she is too sweet.

 

Olive appeared so content her stomach was bulging and for a minute I could swear she gave us a wink and a smile.

 

In our dismay we sat in disbelief how could our Olive be such a thief.

 

Thirty minutes later Phil turned with a jerk and whipped up another order of noodles without the blink of an eye.

 

After all it was Christmas so no need to fret over lost noodles or even a pumpkin pie.

Olive had her Christmas early this year. We laughed more than we cried on that wonderful day. Next year well guard the noodles all right and Olive wont be out of our sight.

 

 

 

 

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Ten Below

When It's Ten Below

 

When it's ten below you car won't go,

So stay inside and there abide

 

When it's ten below it won't snow,

But frosty winds are sure to blow

 

When it's ten below the ice grows thick,

Making everything a little slick

 

When it's ten below it's a world of ice and snow,

It's a time of slumber from worldly cares and woe

 

When it's ten below everything is slow,

There's no need to run to and fro

 

When it's ten below frosted windows provide a silvery show,

Nature designs her etchings that give off a translucent glow

 

When it's ten below the sky is filled with a heavenly glow,

The lakes are frozen over and the shallow streams cease their constant flow

 

When it's ten below the winds are a factor don't you know,

Temperatures plunge to thirty below and it can last for ten days in a row

 

When it's ten below most creatures find it dire,

To survive, most humans find shelter near some form of fire

 

When it's ten below city life slows to a crawl,

Breaking pipes and heaving ground leads to an emergency call

 

When it's ten below the cold enhances every sound,

Trees snap, wheels groan, ice cracks, horns blare, whistles shrill, voices carry, and feet crunch along the snowy ground

 

When it's ten below greater demands come to the fore.

There's a constant searching for shelter, food, fuel and everything more

 

When it's ten below it's not a time to despair,

It's not an ending but a new beginning; spring is in the frozen air.

 

Finis

 

The Professor

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The Winter Storm

The Winter Storm

 

Usually Texas is a sunny place

We seldom burn the fireplace

 

A great storm came and changed its face

Now we burn the fireplace

 

The wood we burn is from the farm

I gather it with saw and carried it with arm

 

I piled it up on a summer day

Knowing that my work surely would pay

 

Rain the sleet came in the night

Temperatures fell to a create frightful sight

 

The furnace toiled all threw the day

At night the fireplace would have its say

 

Log after log were fed to give more heat

We gathered near the fire so sweet

 

Soon my wood began to dwindle

Consumed by the fire like a thief with a swindle

 

The ashes were cleared with special care

A dropped ember could give one a terrible scare

 

A new fire was lit and began to take hold

The warmth it gave was better than gold

 

Texas has snow, which is not a good sign

It stopped my sunning, for which I pine

 

My walks are shorter and require a coat

If a Yankee could see me, he really would gloat

 

A Texan on ice is not a good thing

But wait a minute I think I smell spring!

 

 

The Cold Professor

 

 

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The Land of Ice and Snow

The Land of Ice and Snow

 

In my mind's –eye to my childhood I go, back to the land of ice and snow

 

A northwest wind began to blow to usher in a hint of snow

 

The grey clouds caused the light to fade, warning of things that would cover the glade

 

As the evening came to cast its pale, lights were seen as an amber vale

 

The restless city began its sleep, just as the heavens began to weep

 

Droplets of rain began to fall forming icy sheets to cover it all

 

* * * *

 

In my mind's-eye to my childhood I go, back to the land of ice and snow

 

The trees turned silver, giving off a glow just before it began to snow

 

The flakes came down a few at a time filling the landscape with something sublime

 

Deeper and deeper the whiteness grew; when it would end no one knew

 

As the hours slowly past, the constant wind gave another blast

 

A blanket of snow piled into drifts covering the ground in endless shifts

 

* * * *

 

In my mind's-eye to my childhood I go, back to the land of ice and snow

 

Ice and snow covered it all, it covered the wall and covered the lane; it covered the gravestones that gave so much pain

 

The air was clear as the night grew still; nature was showing her mighty will

 

Winter is time for nature to rest; for humankind it can be a seasonal test

 

In the silence of nature's great sleep; beauty does reign when the snow falls this deep

 

In this wondrous afterglow there comes a thought we long to know: What secret message lies within the falling snow?

 

So back to this land I shall always go, back to this land of ice and snow

 

 

          —The Professor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My Outlook

Life is full of twists and turns, which is not a surprise to anyone with any age. Mostly, its an adventure with many little and big experiences and surprises. This lockdown, which is a form  of imprisonment to some of us, is a time of reflection and contemplation. Thankfully, I have a mainly supportive family to help me from makings bad decisions as well as stupid or hurtful comments. I have just completed my seventh international book and I am currently working on my next project. One might ask: What is the point on keeping on? The point is that life brings pleasure and meaning to life and life can be wonderful, that is, if you keep an open mind and live in the future and not the past. Life in other words, life is a learning adventure in regard to the "life of the mind". Believe or not, I hope to be around to finish this project and to start another project. In the mean time, may I wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving and may God Bless you and yours!

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Definitive Statement

Definitional Statement

 

 

Civism consists of those publicly stated or declared values and virtues, (the accepted norm of human behavior) that have become recognizable cultural forms expressed within a particular society by its citizens. The forms of society include the stated values and virtues-related to government, religion, law, and social relationships (marriage, family life, manners, and civic conduct). These ideal norms of civism vary according to specific societies, as well as specific historical or cultural settings and times. In addition, civism tends to be elastic, in that the norms of civism associated with a particular society will change as social values associated with a particular society change. These changes can be detected by the rhetoric of political leaders and shifts in public attitudes or the citizens' generally shared outlook.

 

For the individual, civism is acquired as an important aspect of childrearing in which an internal reality known as the "life of the mind" is created. The "life of the mind" consists of values and virtues that often are triggered by external stimuli. Once this internal world is formed, the individual comes to interpret social, political, and economic experiences, events, and actions from his mind's-eye perspective. This "life of the mind" influences the individual's actions and reactions to various events, crises, problems, and situations. In other words, the influences of the individual's civism are, to some extent, existential, and also generational, and while there are degrees of common or shared understandings, there also are differences.

 

Thomas L. Dynneson

 

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