Saturday, September 18, 2010

Today -100: September 18, 1910: Of floggings, nations of madmen, and typical politics in Texas and Illinois

The NYT editorializes against public floggings (a deputy marshal recently refused to permit the flogging in Alaska of 4 Japanese convicted of illegal fishing). Flogging is still used in Delaware against tramps, confidence men, thieves, highwaymen and disorderly persons. I guess that was before Delaware became the hq of all those credit card companies.

Famous British psychiatrist Forbes Winslow (who once offered to catch Jack the Ripper but Scotland Yard said no thanks) says in his memoirs that insanity is rising and “By a simple arithmetical calculation can be shown the exact year when there will be more insane persons in the world than sane. We in England are gradually approaching, with the decadence of our youth, a near proximity to a nation of madmen.” Did no one think to ask him what the “exact year when there will be more insane persons in the world than sane” was? That seems like important information to have.

Judicial temperament, Texas style: one candidate for the office of judge of Guadalupe County shoots a rival candidate.

The Illinois primaries were marked by a great deal of vote-buying (quel surprise), but it seems that while selling one’s vote is illegal in the state, bribing a voter is not.

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