On May 15, 1862, Lincoln created the Department of Agriculture, or what he called the "People's Department." Similar special interest federal agencies have followed in its wake.
Fifty years ago, on May 12, 1962, Douglas MacArthur bade farewell to the cadets at West Point, an academy that he attended and graduated first in his class. In his final roll call with the cadets, he reminded them about "Duty, Honor, Country" — hallowed words that define what all future military officers should aspire to be and what MacArthur was.
The artificial ideological line that presumably places Hitler and Mussolini on one side of a mythical ideological spectrum and which places Stalin and Mao on the other side of this spectrum is pure bunk. Barry Goldwater famously said at the 1964 Republican Convention: “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. Moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.”
April 18 will be the 70th anniversary of [Lt. Col. James H. “Jimmy”] Doolittle's Tokyo Raid. This surprise bombing attack on Tokyo and other Japanese cities provided a needed psychological lift for the American people, who had suffered through the devastating Pearl Harbor attack four months earlier.
Otto Otepka is not a name that automatically rings bells in the minds of most Americans, even those Americans with a historical understanding of the role of communism in suborning our government. Yet as William Gill relates in his magisterial work, The Ordeal of Otto Otepka, often lonely individuals guided only by their patriotism, their conscience, and their faith have been the Horatio at the Bridge, protecting the rest of us from evil.
George Washington warned Americans "… to steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world..." "Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations; entangling alliances with none," our third President, Thomas Jefferson, would phrase the same sentiment. Europe, in particular, had long been immersed in the cynical balance of power politics which brought nations to join together to block the hegemony of other nations.
One hundred years ago last week, on March 23, 1912, Japan gave America a gift that keeps on giving: more than 3,000 cherry trees, whose blossoming beauty is celebrated each year. Japan desired friendship with America and our Founding Fathers urged us to reciprocate with all nations that desired amiable relations with our republic.
Lord Byron called him the “Forest-born Demosthenes.” Others called him the “Lion of Liberty.” Whatever the title, Patrick Henry (left) was never one to mince words in the defense of freedom. The silver-tongued orator was never at a loss for words, and he spoke with a ready arsenal of logic. Biographer William Wirt said of him in 1817, “Tis true he could talk — Gods how he could talk!”