Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Archive for December 6th, 2008

She walks in beauty

Posted by Charles II on December 6, 2008

Listen to Siân James’s Little Birds of the Mountain (Better yet, buy the album and enjoy it all)

Siân James, y ferch o Bedlam (The Girl from Bedlam)

Siân James, y ferch o Bedlam (The Girl from Bedlam)

“…even though I have a great love of all kinds of music, folk songs have become a life force from which I cannot escape, and indeed a force from which I do not want to escape.”
The BBC has a game for learning Welsh. As one might expect, I started at the pub.

And here’s a photo from one of Wales’s most beautiful areas.

Pentrefoelas, where my heart dwells.  Image by Delweddau Algieri Images

Posted in Just for fun | Comments Off on She walks in beauty

LBJ Knew Traitors When He Saw Them

Posted by Phoenix Woman on December 6, 2008

Blue Texan passes along this story:

In a segment aired at the news conference, Johnson tells Sen. Everett Dirksen, the Republican minority leader, that it will be Nixon’s responsibility if the South Vietnamese don’t participate in the peace talks.

“This is treason,” LBJ says to Dirksen.

“I know,” Dirksen replies, very softly.

Confronting Nixon by telephone on Nov. 3, Johnson outlines what had been alleged and how important it was to the conduct of the war for Nixon’s people not to meddle.

“My God,” Nixon says to Johnson, “I would never do anything to encourage the South Vietnamese not to come to that conference table.” Instead, Nixon pledged to help in any way Johnson or Rusk suggested, “To hell with the political credit, believe me.”

For Johnson and his top advisers, it wasn’t a matter of whether Nixon was telling the truth but whether accusing Nixon of meddling would give the appearance that Johnson — rather than Nixon — was using the war to influence the election.

Nixon was, of course, lying:

On October 31, 1968, President Lyndon Johnson announced on live television that the North Vietnamese government had agreed to continued peace talks in Paris, and to a cessation of attacks on South Vietnamese cities. In return, the U.S. would immediately stop bombing North Vietnam, and peace talks, this time including the Vietcong and the South Vietnamese government, would resume on November 6.

Almost overnight, LBJ’s “October Surprise” delivered a much-needed shot of adrenaline to the moribund campaign of his Vice President and would-be successor, Hubert Humphrey, who had been trailing Richard Nixon in the polls throughout October.


But Nixon had an October surprise of his own. In the days leading up to LBJ’s announcement, the Nixon team met secretly with Anna Chan Chennault, a wealthy supporter of Chiang Kai-shek, co-chair of Republican Women for Nixon, and confidante of South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu. At Nixon’s behest, Chennault informed Thieu that Nixon would secure a better deal for his country, and that the Democrats were effectively prepared to sell out Saigon in order to secure peace at any price, as the phrase would later go. If Chennault could convince Thieu to stay away from the negotiating table, LBJ would look foolish, and the Democrats’ eleventh-hour gambit would fail.

And that’s exactly what happened.

Posted in LBJ, Nixon, rightwing moral cripples, Vietnam | 9 Comments »

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