April 21, 2006

Nothing To Do With Politics

Michael Barrett, that wonderful guy who designed my site, who contributed the Fight On ribbon and who is the author of the terrific blog "Slobokans Site 'O Schtuff" has a new endeavor. It's called Retromental-Time-Capsules and is a series of interviews with everyday people, capturing the essence of history as seen through the eyes of not the professional historian, but the people who lived it.

I urge you to go listen. You won't be disappointed.

Michael, you done good brother, you done good!

Posted by GM Roper at April 21, 2006 07:26 AM | TrackBack

G.M., thanks for this. Michael Barrett has hit the nail on the head about who is the best judge of history. Over at Cooper's, I've mixed it up with those who say that because historians have rated Bush as "the worst president," then Bush must be the worst.

I contend that accountants, economists, pharmacists, social workers, steel workers, and baseball fans can analyze history as well as someone whose life was spent behind the walls of academia--maybe better. I can tell someone more about relevant history (i.e., this does not cover The War of the Roses or the Hundred Year War), than someone who graduated in history and was born after Reagan's first election.

Historians typically are liberal so they go into settings with a liberal bias, or historians have liberal biases so they go into liberal settings. Either way, they're typically liberal and out of touch with most of reality. Yet, because they are writers or professors, they have big egos and want to feel important about their wisdom to share. I don't buy what they're selling.

Well, I have taken a poll of accountants, and most agree that historians fall into the lowest level of professions, right above journalists. Please don't question our credentials to make that judgment, as you must assume that we are right because we say so.

To be more specific about Michael's work, we have gotten "stories" about the depression, WW II, union stirkes, mine disasters, and politics from some of our elderly family members. Some of it was taped and some was written, and all of it was interesting and accurate. There's nothing better than to understand history from someone who lived it versus someone who only studied it (and was taught by another liberal.)

There is an art to getting this information, and you must be very specific in your questions. For instance, you can't say "tell me about the 1930's." You have to narrow in on questions specific about the depression (or Roosevelt.) However, once their memories kick in, the stories will flow.

I hope everyone approaches their parents, grandparents, or other elderly relatives to learn first hand about history from them. Then, document it. Believe, me. A lot can be learned that no history course can teach you--plus, you don't have to memorize dates and names that you can't pronounce.

Good for Michael, and thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Posted by Woody at April 21, 2006 08:16 AM

"Over at Cooper's, I've mixed it up with those who say that because historians have rated Bush as "the worst president," then Bush must be the worst."

Wrong again! Clinton was the first President that I couldn't hold up as a role model for my children - How bad is that? Nope ... on the pond scum scale, Bush is at least floating on the surface, but Clinton is somewhere down below Carp s**t.

Posted by Vulgorilla at April 21, 2006 02:08 PM

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