Friday, March 14, 2014

Today -100: March 14, 1914: Of dances not conducive to propriety, happy hoboes, crazed explorers, refugees, monopolies, and frank witnesses

Italian troops kill 263 natives in still-unpacified Libya, as was the custom.

The Massachusetts Legislature rejects a bill to ban the tango and other dances “not conducive to propriety.”

Happy Headline of the Day -100: “Hobo Army Happy.” Yolo County ordered the unemployed men to leave, but it lacks sufficient police to enforce the order. The unemployed non-marchers are currently being fed by Sacramento unions while Sacramento, Yolo, Placer and Nevada counties debate what to do about them. The governor of Nevada says he’ll stop them at the border. “So Kelley’s men continue to fish, eat, and bask in the sunshine.”

Crazed Headline of the Day -100: “Crazed by the Antarctic.” Sydney Jeffreys, the wireless operator on ill-fated Mawson expedition, driven crazy by memories of the cold and starvation and whatnot, wanders off into the Australian bush to die but is found before he succeeds. He’s now in a nice warm lunatic asylum.

The US bills the Mexican government $100,000 for the care and feeding of Mexican refugees. Huerta is disinclined to pay. Meanwhile, lawyers for 3,600 Mexican soldiers interned at Fort Bliss are filing habeas writs claiming that while the Hague treaty requires soldiers escaping a war into a third country to be held for the duration of that war, this does not apply to civil wars.

Supposedly, King George has told Prime Minister Asquith that while his government does indeed have an electoral mandate for Home Rule (contrary to the position of the Tories), it lacks one to coerce Northern Ireland. He bases this on Asquith’s off-hand remark during the last elections that he didn’t contemplate the possibility of Ulster resistance. This royal intervention (if the story is true) was responsible for Asquith’s offer of referenda in the nine NI counties on a temporary opt-out.

Pres. Wilson decides not to protest on behalf of Standard Oil (as the Taft Administration did) against German moves to establish a state oil monopoly (it would still import about the same amount of American oil, just not necessarily as much from Standard).

Another witness in the Leo Frank case comes forward. She heard screams, presumably those of Mary Phagan being murdered, but the solicitor-general couldn’t get her to change her story to say that they occurred at the time his theory of the case called for, rather than at a time when Frank had an alibi, and he never called her as a witness.

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