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.
SOCIAL STUDIES DIARY
The Washington Tea Party
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
Global Warming and the Skating Rink
Thomas L. Dynneson
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
Thomas L. Dynneson
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
Olive the Noodle Eating Dog
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.
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.