Is What Bernie Sanders is Saying not True?

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

Is someone a radical left if he calls a truth by its name – a truth that affects the majority of people in the U.S. at that?

The truth should prevail above personal political and, by the way, religious convictions. Why? For, first, humanity has been misled and abused by both sides – by politics and even more so by religions – more often than seldom. And secondly, because those who in principle give their convictions a higher value than facts and truth degrade themselves to intellectually wretched creatures whose train of thought discharge into baseless assertions. From such a corner emerge the conspiracy theorists, who, by the way, have always existed throughout history.

Without my own experience, I probably wouldn’t believe Bernie Sanders so easily either. In eight years of working for a company called Walmart, I’ve encountered more than enough not to know what he’s talking about. I can justifiably say that I have not experienced such a lack of rights on the part of the workers even under communist rule in the GDR. There – in a command state in which we were all walled in – at least the physical well-being of the workers was still taken care of. In the workplace, physical integrity was a high priority, and no one has ever been burdened with additional financial demands other than the monthly health insurance contribution. Medical care at that time was excellent, even if it was subsidized.

It is an arbitrariness like in a third world country, to which the employees at Walmart and more than likely elsewhere in the country are exposed – without a real possibility to defend themselves. Working time was cut if the profit figures for the store did not match greedy corporate expectations. Consequently, those who were spared from even lesser income now had to run faster to get all the work done. In a hopelessly understaffed department, I contracted a double hernia. All references from my side to a health impairment contracted at Walmart were of no use – the superiors had their instructions according to which they had to proceed.

A case like mine was everyday business, and Walmart had long since taken precautions to shirk its financial responsibility. Workers’ compensation insurance was only on paper, because according to Walmart’s philosophy, I had not sustained the injury while loading hundreds of bags of mulch, garden soil and compost for the customers, not seldom without help, but probably at home growing tomatoes or studying American history books.

Despite health insurance, a not inconsiderable part of the costs for the surgery fell on me. I settled the bill with means not generated in the USA, but in my home country Germany. How many Americans are fortunate enough to be able to similarly compensate for the miserable care their own wealthy country provides them?

After the passing of a young colleague, the lady from Human Resources went from table to table in the Walmart break room asking for donations for his immense hospital bill that the bereaved family was facing. No one sitting there could answer in the negative. People barely able to make ends meet themselves pulled a dollar out of their pockets, some as much as five, while American health insurance companies shoveled billions in profits into their own pockets without lawmakers lifting a finger to stop the criminal profiteering at the public’s expense.

A few weeks later, this HR woman who had helped me get a full-time job in 2014, was also hospitalized and died.

During my tenure at Walmart, I’ve seen colleagues 80 and older dragging themselves to work, forced by medical bills, incurred years ago. People undergoing cancer treatment had visible difficulty to make it through the workday. I saw all this for the first time in my life, and I couldn’t believe I was in the United States of America.

Of course, Bernie Sanders is right. Anyone who denies this has lost all touch with reality and lives in another galaxy. Facts cannot be blurred by closed eyes during prayer, either, but faith and belief can be misleading. Religion can very easily lead astray – especially when those who derive lucrative benefits from it know how to skillfully spread it among people as an ideology. As a consequence, this has a lot to do with how few of my colleagues recognized the injustices that happened to them every day. Most took it in silence. To put it bluntly: they were used to it, they didn’t know any different.

The old man Bernie is also right about the Democratic Party. Because just like the Republicans, Democrats with very view exceptions are also grateful recipients of large donations from the country’s moneyed elite. Their corrupt nature deprives millions of needy Americans of much-needed help in connection with the build back better act once so hopefully announced by Biden. Instead of supporting their president, his own party is embroiled in an internal battle of alignment while more and more Americans are dissatisfied.

Is he really surprised? Joe Biden is an American, he should have known better. After all, not long ago he publicly described himself as a capitalist. It seemed to me as if he wanted to make clear with this very insipid formulation how little he has to do with socialist ambitions. The man knows only too well what a sour taste such a disposition would evoke in most of his compatriots. Therefore, he did not even bother to explain to them what socialism actually is, nor what kind of capitalist he himself impersonates as president of the country.

I don’t think a turn for the better is imminent for most Americans.

The Neoliberal Blow to the USA

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

Children sent to school with guns, a silly never-ending abortion debate, a congressman posing with his family in front of a Christmas tree, all with guns in hand: profit-hungry gun manufacturers with a criminal National Rifle Association (NRA) as their umbrella of protection take precedence over the welfare of the American people, while at the same time the protection of unborn life is prioritized as the noblest of Christian values. The insanity of all American contradictions is supported and directed by the donors of a targeted policy that in the end ensures the greatest possible financial gain for both sides. At the same time, most Americans are apparently unwilling to recognize that their society is vegetating under subversive neoliberalism.

How should they know? If they already associate the term “socialism” with the most ludicrous notions, then how should they grasp the facts about neoliberalism in their very own country? An essential factor is: There is no realistic approach to tangible socialism in the United States; instead, neoliberalism is pervasive. The specter of socialism is meant to ensure that a perception of real existing neoliberalism cannot arise in the first place.

I know both forms of society all too well; I have personally lived among them and experienced them first hand. The second experience occurred in a place of freedom where I least expected it: the United States of America. For in the past, living far away in a completely different world, we looked longingly to America in the firm belief that this was the freest country on earth.

In my “first life”, I was involuntarily exposed to socialism in the German Democratic Republic (GDR) for 28 years. I didn’t see anyone there who was really enthusiastic about it; we were walled in, separated from relatives in the free part of Germany, and there was no escape without a high possibility of endangering life and limb. In 1989, the barrel overflowed, and the long-pent-up popular anger was discharged in an astonishingly peaceful manner. The realization had already grown in us long before: Socialism is indeed a dictatorship, therefore it has no human face and it does not work also because there is no freedom for individual creativity due to the nationalized means of production. Moreover, people in the masses do not function according to predetermined moral norms. For similar reasons, Christianity as a whole has continuously failed in its own demands, with very few people able to live according to Christian ambitions (read the first paragraph again).

I experienced the excesses of neoliberalism for more than eight years in a company called “Walmart”; a lawless space without any legal protection for the working people, some features strongly reminiscent of the GDR with intimidation methods the order of the day, here and there. Of course, in the end you could “merely” lose your job at Walmart, while in the GDR personal freedom was at stake – a disproportionately higher price. In terms of labor, however, the working people in the GDR did have rights, which I could not see in any way at Walmart.

The deception about socialism is spread in the United States as deliberately and purposefully as is the concealment of inhuman neoliberalism: in the media, in the schools, in the churches, by politics anyway, because the political caste is the essential part of the whole, similar to a referee in sports who has been bribed by one of the participating teams. As shocking as the realization is, but it has been possible in the land of the free and the brave to create a broad stratum of ordinary people whose thinking is directed to the restrictions of microcosm and who willingly allow themselves to be trimmed in almost any direction – except that of reality.

The real disaster of the present is the Republican Party’s nearly unconditional agreement to neoliberalism, thereby dealing a deep blow to the old idea of conservatism on American soil. Large sections of the Democrats are not lagging behind. This is how a country is divided from the top down. Those who speak out against it risk being assigned to socialism, a form of society that is not applicable to practical life anyway.

Thus, a conducive discourse about the country’s problems cannot even take place, especially since every opinion in the U.S. is subject to the principle of deeply divided two-party rule. Even wearing a mouth-nose guard because of Corona some interpret as political orientation.

How conditions are supposed to change for the better under such circumstances is a mystery to me.

A Special Kind of “Freedom”

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

In 23 years of living in the US, I never really “warmed up” to the American culture of life. The closest I came to supporting America in recent years was related to the US women’s soccer team – and not only because of their enthusiastic play, but also how civilized they behaved off the field, especially when it came to showing true character by unitedly rejecting the visit to the White House, where a perverted buffoon was president.

Unfortunately, this nation is not as united in its sanity and a responsible-minded, true devotion to the Fatherland as this outstanding soccer team.

The sometimes unnerving American bluster about freedom can certainly correspond to an individual’s view of things – or to a widespread self-deception. Americans obviously have to stress over and over again how free they are because in reality they are unfree, and they are unfree because there is no basic guarantee of fair wages in their country, much less of universal health care affordable to everyone.

How can people call their country a free country when the vast majority of their own population does not even have the freedom to not have to constantly worry about the essentials of life that define a true and just democracy?

American Opportunities, American Unscrupulousness

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

It is often said that the USA is the land of unlimited opportunity. For me, this proud claim seems to come from a bygone era. I must have missed that time. And even if this statement was ever in common use – which it was -, it is inherently false: for not everyone has the doors open to them that are opened to others by skill and ability, and not infrequently by pure chance. Perhaps this is called the luck of life, and not everyone is a born academic. The non-academic or someone who has not progressed beyond a simple school-leaving certificate has no less value for society, because there must also be someone who puts his hand in the dirt to produce food. After all, well-heeled people can’t eat their money.

Over time, the sayings about the U.S. that circulated in Europe, especially after World War II, must have relativized themselves. Because the “freest country on this earth” has long ceased to exist. A country in which a very small upper class is allowed to hoard most of the wealth, almost untroubled by any legislation and at the visible expense of the majority of its own citizens, thereby restricting their possibilities, can hardly be considered unreservedly as a free land. A country that allows individuals to outsource entire branches of production to India or China because profit is more important than the well-being of their own compatriots is probably better served by the term “dictatorship of money.” And when it is obvious that any political, federal administration of this country, including the branches of legislature, stand idly by and watch these goings-on because they are part of the deal, then the structure of this country is almost taking on mafia-like forms.

Taking all these phenomena into account, the arc from the American oligarchy mentioned here to the events of January 6, 2021, is not stretched far. For the storming of the Capitol by propaganda-blinded hordes is nothing other than an expression of the abuse of American idealism by the influence of power and money – led by unscrupulous, populist politicians interested only in their own selfish gain. The fact that they are risking the fate of the entire country in the process is apparently not realized by millions of Americans, which no longer rules out Donald Trump’s return to the White House.

Dangerous Mixture

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

The remaining Republican constituency, however numerous, has solidified into an unsocialzed, deluded bunch over a laughingstock like Trump: His followers are filled with a pathetic, populist mindset camouflaged as patriotism, fed by fabricated catchphrases that even the mentally deficient can easily memorize and then parrot as the familiar bird can.

Thematically, most can hardly produce anything coherent from their own thoughts that would make any sense to support their views. Apart from repeating propaganda platitudes, they do not provide any answers to problems that exist in reality. An own fact check with appropriate background knowledge does not take place, because the mental energy is missing and often probably also an honest intention.

It is frightening to observe how much this propaganda-pushed mentality is becoming entrenched in other developed countries as well – but nowhere else as intensively as in the USA. Trump embodies the intellectual decay of much of American society.

There is no end in sight to the dangerous blend of misinformation, lies, conspiracy theories, not-knowing, misdirection, and delusion. For there are millions of people who blindly believe every claim, no matter how abstruse, as long as it only corresponds to their own paranoid fantasies.

Twisted Talent: DeSantis for President

The Man who invented Germany in the Middle Ages

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

Ron DeSantis is an especially known interpretative twister of facts – obvious at least for those who scrutinize his claims -; and he is somebody who has been talking after Trump’s mouth. He is not bothered by any nonsense he utters because he knows that his willing audience will accept anything.

But maybe someone should give him some private lessons in history, because when he tells a certain story with a religious tinge of the three masons “in Germany in medieval times”, all his ignorance comes through.

True, it’s a brilliant story he’s spinning – but unfortunately with a little flaw: For in the times of the Middle Ages, not only did Germany not exist, neither as a country nor as a unified nation – hardly anyone would have known what to do with the term “Germany” up to the 15th century. DeSantis, however, seems to like Germany, because he mentions the country quite often – unfortunately never in a logical context.

With this in mind: What kind of political leaders are these – in this case an acting governor in Florida – who open their mouths and don’t know what they are talking about? Before one speaks, one should know.

Probably this figure also wants to become the next president of the United States of America.

Remark: The first German nation-state was proclaimed on 18 January, 1871, in Versailles; its founder was the Prussian Prime Minister and subsequent Reich Chancellor Otto von Bismarck. The “Germany” to which DeSantis wishes to refer was, from the 9th century onward, called the “Holy Roman Empire”, later of German Nation – a loose, often obscure association of kingdoms, counties, duchies, numbering 330 in the 18th century and often in enmity with each other. For a long time, Austria-Habsburg was the leading power. – This political entity came to an end only late – in 1806 with the Prussian defeat by Napoleon.

“Far-Left, Radical Socialist Policies”

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

Under the influence of a primitive demagogue, the Republican Party leadership continues to feed its base with whopping lies.

After Trump’s presidency, many Americans believe that the current administration is destroying cherished American values and drives the U.S. toward socialism. In this context, Elise Stefanik, chair of the Republican House Conference, uttered a phrase that makes a person who had lived involuntarily in a socialism for almost thirty years cringe:

She called the agenda of the current US-Administration “far-left, radical socialist policies.”

At this point it should be noted: Whoever uses dull slogans exposes himself to the suspicion of wanting to take others for fools; he also reveals that he might be unable to contribute any conclusive arguments for the solution of real problems. By no means for the first time in its history is the GOP summoning the specter of socialism to scare Americans away from any acceptance of policies other than its own.

In contrast to Stefanik, this writer experienced socialism firsthand, opposed it in the GDR (“East Germany”) with modest means as much as possible, put up with personal disadvantages in the process, and experienced with millions of others the fall of the Berlin Wall as a result of a peaceful revolution.*

I can say with certainty: this woman has not the faintest idea what she is talking about when she mouths the word “socialism.”

I repeat here what should be easy for even the average person to understand: Socialism is when the means of production are not in private hands, but in the hands of the state. Period. There is not even a hint of a precondition in the USA that can bring the country toward socialism.

What the country lacks are accompanying governmental measures to curb social injustice, which cries out to heaven in the United States. Previous presidents have already denounced this and/or used government power to fight social injustice: from John Adams via Teddy Roosevelt (by the way: a Republican), Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman to Lyndon B. Johnson.

None of them was a socialist because of it.

Whoever manages to compare a policy of social justice with socialism, and in doing so also falls on open ears among the population, is in my eyes an unscrupulous populist. A person who has a minimum knowledge of history and is still of sound mind, will not follow these pipers.

By the way – anyone who fobs off his own base (de facto: his own family) with cheap, propaganda-ridden phrases should not deserve to be elected to any responsibility whatsoever.

What has the Republican Party turned into?

Notes:

*I was born in 1961 at the junction of the Cold War, just 21 miles from the deadly border that once separated Germany. Bear in mind that I grew up behind barbed wire not because of a non-functioning socialism (which we did not want), but as a direct consequence of World War II sparked by Germany. In the further historical development, the inner-German border was built by communists in the midst of increasing tensions and the collision of interests between the U.S. and its erstwhile ally, the Communist-Bolshevik Soviet Union, which eventually morphed into hostility. – Without this illegal, impenetrable border, millions more people would have fled from the Soviet sector to the free West than had already done so before 1961.

“Behind Me are Millions”

A German warning to America from History

From my Writing Room

Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

It would be a mistake to assume that Donald Trump, the mob-president, depends on the Republican Party. Instead, it must be feared that the bulk of his 74 million voters will foolishly follow him, if not within the GOP, so in any other political movement – after all, idiocy is sufficiently established in this society to serve as the trailblazer. No law will be an issue anymore.

This man with limited intellectual faculties, stricken by pathological egotism and vindictiveness, will very likely be back in public “in one form or the other”, as he himself put it in his last hours in office. America’s democracy, including a shocking number of citizens, has failed in the most despicable manner, which will result in more consequences for this country.

Of course, Trump is not Hitler, who once boasted “Behind me are Millions.” Unfortunately, it was true. And yet, the situation is insofar comparable as Trump, still supported by millions, can play cat and mouse with the Republican Party, and, as the attack on the Capitol has proven, challenge the American democracy and its institutions to the core, virtually at will and without being punished. This fact will not have escaped his followers.

In 1932 and before, when Hitler did pretty much something very similar even before he became Chancellor in the following year, the illusory “Cabinet of the Barons”, the stirrup holders of the Austrian corporal, had degraded itself to powerlessness, because after all the assurances it was now too late to do something against Hitler – for millions were following him in ecstasy, spurred on with simple paroles against the establishment. Notice something?

To be sincere: If there had not been an American 1 June 2020 (when local law enforcement cleared peaceful demonstrators from Lafayette Square) and a 6 January 2021 (when the Capitol riot occurred), any comparisons with Hitler would not have even remotely entered my mind. As an historian, like so many Americans, I would have never thought such events possible as it happened in Washington D.C.

The darkest chapter in German history will certainly never repeat itself in an American way. For this, in retrospect, not least the foreign and domestic policy accents are as different as day and night, not to mention the historical and economic situation of both countries – Germany back then and the US today. But the danger that something more entirely atypical by American political standards could happen on a grand scale, can no longer be considered impossible. Much will certainly depend on the outcome of the next elections, and also if any of the various criminal investigations against Trump as a private individual will derail him.

It is much to be hoped that Nikki Haley, former Republican South Carolina governor and UN ambassador, who broke with Trump, is right about her prophecy: that Donald Trump will not return.*

But, how does she know that?

Note: *Nikki Haley, interview with “Politico”, 12 February 2021.

Blue Grass

A Clueless President Might not be Responsible?

From my Writing Room

Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

In a recent interview with “Politico”, Nikki Haley, former US-ambassador to the United Nations, whose parents were born in India, made the following, intriguing statement about Donald Trump and his belief that the election was stolen, quote: “That would be like you saying that grass is blue and you genuinely believing it. Is it irresponsible that you’re colorblind and you truly believe that?”*

I have often used the same expression, “Blue Grass”, in a very similar context, not only assigning it to Trump, but rather to at least half of the US populace. Instinctively, one could also compare it to the tale of the people jumping out of the window from the tenth floor because they were told to do so. This is exactly the central issue in this country and the reason why things more than likely will not change as they certainly would have to in order to facilitate social progress: People, not seldom trapped in religious delusion in their desperate quest for stability and thus restricted in their mental powers, have great difficulty to recognize facts and truths – because they have lost the ability of independent thinking.

The telling anomaly of human error refers not only to the election, it is much more: It is the reality of the virus and facts about wearing masks; it is the issue about man induced global warming; it is the propagation of insane conspiracy theories; and it also is, as an example of many, the gun mania in this country. The latter is also a very dangerous problem, and those who think they have Second Amendment rights are simply on the wrong track, to put it mildly. All it would take for them to recognize their error is a look into the history books of their own country and listen to their own scholars, and have the capacity of being candid with oneself: It is not what you wish it would be, because facts and evidence prove otherwise.

But, anticipating the ability from obstinate people to separate fact from fable will be nearly impossible. It is no accident that Trump literally could say and do what he wanted during his term, and he still received the votes of more than 74 million Americans in the past presidential election. There are certainly several reasons that might have contributed to an individual decision voting for Trump. But the core factor remains that Trump perverted the facts nearly on a daily basis, which was visible and audible on-camera, and he furthermore violated and imperiled the standards of American democracy even before he was elected. Those who voted for him anyway should question themselves about the stability and sincerity of their own mentality and character.

As an aside: The same lady mentioned at the outset of this little story, Nikki Haley – a potential Republican candidate for the presidency in 2024 -, also said this a few days ago: “Give the guy [Trump] a break.”

Note: *Haley in an interview with Politico, published 12 February 2021.

The Myth of the Second Amendment

From my Writing Room

Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr

The Second Amendment “has been the subject of one of the greatest pieces of fraud, I repeat the word ‘fraud’, on the American public by special interest groups that I have ever seen in my lifetime.” [1]
Warren E. Burger, Republican, 15th Chief Justice of the United States, serving from 1969 to 1986

Americans who think they have Second Amendment rights are deluding themselves, and they do so either knowingly in their blindfolded, uncompromising passion for guns, or in blunt ignorance of their own country’s history. The latter, in all probability, may present the larger segments of the population fascinated with gun smoke.

On that score, it is not easy to ascertain the mindset of a sole, highly educated county commissioner who found himself in the position to publicly expressing his personal support for the Second Amendment per resolution – as if his district of responsibility, Union County in North Georgia, had all of the sudden ascended to the hub of the universe. More likely, as an alleged Democrat in charge of an area where 81 percent of the constituents chose Donald Trump, the local man named Lamar Paris might have felt pressure from several sides alike to assure the gun freaks that nobody will take their toys away – just like a kindergartener would comfort her little flock.

In a packed meeting on January 21, 2021, the riflemen’s ardor took on overheated forms in such a way that Paris seemingly had to press every button of his appeasement skills to prevent his county possibly named a “Second Amendment sanctuary county.” Festus, Marshal Matt Dillon, Miss Kitty, and Doc Adams – that’s for sure – would have gotten a real kick out of so much rampant devotion, had they only been able to attend such exceptional meeting.  

The alleged background of the commotion constituted fearful gun owners emotionally backfiring on imaginary government attacks directed at their “Second Amendment rights”, particularly after the political signals in their home state had just recently turned from red to blue.

In such an atmosphere, it is hard to imagine that historic facts, let alone rationality, will play any role to people still roaming through the woods in search for animals like once Daniel Boone. These folks take nothing but their own version of truth to their heart and will never be convinced about the functionality of any logical mechanisms in the human brain. And they will always and with all possible self-confidence stick to their own convictions or whatever they were told by their deluders, come hell or high water, and no matter how surreal these convictions to others might appear.

But, as is mostly the case, historic facts speak a different language and seldom neither match nor serve ardent escapist’s wishful thinking. The Second Amendment, written 232 years ago by a founding father named James Madison, who later was to become the nation’s fourth president, never gave any American citizens the right to bear arms – neither back then, nor today. The infamous lines were clearly born out of necessity, namely, the state’s then-insistence to maintain their own militias, responsible for their defense themselves in preference to a standing, federal army. At the will of the states, the state militias were to constitute the foundation of the national defense.

As a result, the draft for the Second Amendment Madison was working on, originating from Virginia, read as follows: “The people have a right to keep and bear arms; that a well-regulated militia composed of the body of the people trained to arms is the proper national, and safe defense of a free state. That standing armies in times of peace are dangerous to liberty, and therefore ought to be avoided.” [2]

Warren Burger was not the first chief justice expressing his truthful interpretation of the Second Amendment. Alluding to the groundbreaking 2008 “District of Columbia versus Heller” decision by the Supreme Court, US-Historian Professor Joseph Ellis writes: “The Heller Decision by [Justice Antonin] Scalia purports to be an originalist interpretation of Madison’s meanings in the spring of 1789 and the meanings ordinary Americans at that time shared concerning ‘the right to bear arms.’ It is nothing of that sort. And no federal or Supreme Court between 1789 and 2008 ever reached the conclusion. Scalia did. Indeed, the true originalist opinion in Heller is by Justice Stevens, who argued that “bear arms” meant serve in the militia.” [3]

In this context, legalistic legerdemains within the branches of the US-government, conducted by some if not many of their representatives influenced by lobbying, have made this fraud possible and turned the Second Amendment and its true meaning literally on its head.

Epilogue: To me, chief justice’s Warren Burgers remarks from 1991, very likely aimed at the National Rifle Association (NRA), left an even deeper impression since he used the term “special interest groups” – an extremely applicable term from the beginnings of human history on, and distinctive as always. For thinking Americans living in present times, a careful observation of these special interest groups might lead them closer to a more realistic perception about the true reasons for the misfortune in their country. These are the groups (institutions) of interests (the few versus the many – see John Adams) that – undisturbed by law and government – take advantage of people’s widespread simplemindedness, and in addition they are perfectly skilled to clandestinely line their own pockets with billions, sometimes under the pretense of the Good Samaritan, and even referencing to God on their holy Sunday morning sessions. Restraining the veritable, greedy sources that cause bitterness for the majority in this society, is a better approach than according credibility to conspiracy theorists and any other blabbermouths – no matter where they place themselves in front of a seducible audience.

Notes

[1] The quote is taken from “Six Amendments – How and Why we Should Change the Constitution”, page 127; John Paul Stevens, former Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. Also available in “American Dialogue – the Founders and Us”, Joseph J. Ellis, page 161. – On the subject: Interview Warren Burger/PBS News Hour on 12/16/1991: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eya_k4P-iEo

[2] See Joseph J. Ellis, “American Dialogue – the Founders and Us”, page 147.

[3] US-Historian Professor Joseph J. Ellis in a letter to the author of this article, dated 04/10/2018.