Thursday, May 31, 2012
ON THIS DAY IN PARA-CULTURE, MAY 31
On this day in the year 455, Emperor Flavius Petronius Maximus is stoned to death by an angry mob while fleeing Rome. He was only Emperor for two months and is best remembered for failing to prevent the Vandals' sack of Rome. Well... for that, and for being stoned to death by an angry mob.
On this day in 1962, Nazi bureaucrat Adolf Eichmann is hanged in Israel for playing a major role in the planning and implementation of Hitler's "Final Solution" to the "problem" of European Jewry. Meanwhile, over at IBM...
On this day in 2005, Vanity Fair Magazine reveals that FBI Number Two Mark Felt was the anonymous source named Deep Throat who gave Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein all those Watergate tips that helped force Richard Nixon to resign the Presidency and vacate the White House on August 9 of 1974. That's what The Powers That Be would like us all to believe. In all likelihood, however, Mark Felt was NOT Deep Throat... or, at least, he wasn't the only Deep Throat. In his landmark book Against Them, journalist Tegan Mathis argues persuasively that the real Deep Throat was actually a hard-partying White House aide named Richard Bruce Cheney, and Woodward asked Felt to assume the sole mantle of Deep Throat only to provide cover for the next vice president of the United States of America... and to help keep the lid on the assassination of JFK. It might seem bonkers at first blush, but when you consider the fact that there has always been an impressive range of scholarship linking Watergate to JFK's assassination, it becomes less so. If you'd like to buy a copy of Mathis' Against Them via Amazon, a tiny portion of the proceeds will go towards maintaining the Daily Dirt Diaspora family of sites. Click HERE for a hardcopy version, or HERE for a Kindle, ebook version, at half the price!
On this night in 1889, after the catastrophic failure of the South Fork dam sent a sixty-foot wall of water and debris crashing through a heavily populated Pennsylvania valley at forty miles per hour, the Johnstown Flood claims 2,209 lives. And all because a handful of stupid-evil-rich fuckers from Pittsburgh wanted some place nice and private to hunt, fish, and otherwise enjoy the Good Life away from the prying eyes of the annoying poor.
On this day in 1969, while in the midst of an extended "bed-in" at a Toronto hotel, John Lennon and Yoko Ono record their famous hippy anthem Give Peace a Chance. Later that week, after the living legends end their demonstration and check out, the cleaning staff declare that John and Yoko should give probably soap a chance. "These sheets stink!" shrieked one disgusted housekeeper.