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[ih] History of Flaming

On 17 May 2013 at 14:19, John Day wrote:

> This is a common problem I find with historians.  In fact, I was 
> reading a quite interesting article last night on how this same 
> problem had distorted histories of the English Civil War and 
> Cromwell's role.  Over the past  3 centuries, the view of the 
> conflict and its causes has changed at least 3 times to fit the times 
> of the authors.  None of which it appears was the case at the time. 
> A real problem of historians tending to ascribe today's motivations 
> to yesterday's motivations.

Off topic for the list but perhaps interesting: I just started reading 
"Lies My Teach Told Me" / Everything your american history textbook got 
wrong.  By James Loewen

So far he's skewered Woodrow Wilson and Helen Keller (!).  And now he's 
working through the myths (and lies) about Christopher Columbus [and the 
"discovery" (sic) and occupation of the Western Hemisphere by Europeans]. 

The thing is he tries to assemble some picture of the "truth" [perhaps 
again, 'sic'] from the best sources he can find [which are never American 
History texts].  Things like Columbus's (and his crews) journals, and 
other evidence [e.g., that aside from the folks already here, North 
America was likely already "discovered" by the Norse and a millennium 
earlier by the Phoenicians].

Anyhow...  apologies the interruption/diversion: back to flaming... :o)

> As I was always taught:  one must look at things from the point of 
> view of the organism not the observer.
> This has been even worse with the history of the Internet, where many 
> Just-So stories abound.  Many times I have read completely fictional 
> accounts of history in this field based on "it must have been like 
> this."  The tendency to create the history based on the outcome is 
> far too common or where myths seem to be all too prevalent.
> As to whether flaming has changed, it is hard to tell.  I doubt that 
> any of us have a wide enough exposure to know at this point.  It does 
> seem that the lists I am on are a bit more sedate.  That the flames 
> of old if they start to arise are tampered more quickly.  It is hard 
> to tell if this is because we are more civilized or because there is 
> less tolerance when the shoe is on the other foot.
> Take care,
> John Day

Bernie Cosell                     Fantasy Farm Fibers
mailto:bernie at fantasyfarm.com     Pearisburg, VA
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