Tuesday, November 19, 2013
19 November 2013
Sandrine Holt b. 1972 (Underworld: Awakening, Resident Evil:Apocalypse)
Jason Scott Lee b. 1966 (Back to the Future II, Soldier)
Terry Ferrell b. 1963 (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, The Twilight Zone, Quantum Leap, Hellraiser III)
Jodie Foster b. 1962 (Contact, Elysium, The X-Files)
Charlie Kaufman b. 1958 (writer, Being John Malkovich, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind)
Tom Virtue b. 1957 (Iron Man 3, Firefly, Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon, Star Trek:Voyager, The X-Files)
Kathleen Quinlan b. 1954 (Twilight Zone: The Movie, Event Horizon)
Robert Beltran b. 1953 (Night of the Comet, Star Trek:Voyager)
Alan Young b. 1919 (The Time Machine)
An unusual list today, given that everybody on it is still alive, including Alan Young, best known as Wilbur on Mr. Ed but mentioned here for his role in The Time Machine, who turns 95 today. All of the women on the list qualify for the Pretty Girl = Picture Slot criteria, but I chose Terry Ferrell because she's tallest. Regular readers will know that's how I roll.
Many happy returns to all our birthday boys and girls.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 released 2010
The next war will be fought with nuclear warheads mounted on inter-continental ballistic missiles.
Predictor: General H.H. "Hap" Arnold, the basis for the LIFE magazine article The 36-Hour War, published in the November 19, 1945
Reality: Usually, the predictions on this blog have dates attached, sometimes exact days, at least the year. That way, they can be verified or falsified. A prediction with no date such as this one is either fulfilled or unfilled, and luckily for us sixty eight years later, this one is unfulfilled and at least in terms of the exact enemy being the Soviet Union, it cannot be fulfilled.
I publish this because it sets the tone for the second half of the 20th Century. We didn't fight a nuclear war, but it was always the threat hanging over our head. I have purchased Eric Schlosser's Command and Control, but I haven't read it yet. (Still wading through Nate Silver's The Signal and the Noise, very slow going.) From the few previews I've seen, Schlosser's book makes it clear that we got lucky multiple times, barely avoiding both nuclear accidents and accidental launches based on data that made it look like a first strike was incoming, both on the American side and the Soviet.
All throughout my childhood I heard the United States is the greatest country in the world. I never heard anyone seriously dispute it back in the day, but very few people said the other part of the truth, which was that the undeniable predominant position was only attained after the end of World War II when Europe and most of Asia were in ruins.
Certainly, Arnold wrote this report and the Pentagon brass decided to release it to LIFE for self-interested motives. Our standard operating procedure was to bring military spending down to extremely modest levels once a war was over, and isolationism was a very commonly held and mainstream political position. The military didn't want this to continue, and besides their own pocketbook motives, it was clear that both Japan and Germany thought declaring war against us was a reasonable risk because we were not arming ourselves the way they were. Since then, we have armed ourselves at levels no other country has ever done consistently in peacetime.
Discussing this prediction will be a regular feature on the blog every November 19, a holiday no one officially celebrates that I call You Have Official Permission To Freak The Fuck Out Day. I want to thank Professor Ian Abrams of Drexel University for bringing this article to my attention. You can read it and look at the remarkable illustrations on his website, which you can visit by clicking this link.
Looking one day ahead... INTO THE FUTURE!
Has Obama been overthrown yet? I could have sworn that was going to happen this week.
Join us then... IN THE FUTURE!