Saturday, February 7, 2015

How Brian Williams Helped Washington Win The Battle Of Trenton

The Daily Caller has the scoop:

I know. Because I was there too.

I remember the whole thing like it was 240 years ago. Which is to say, not very well. But certain things about the events of that evening and the following morning stand out.

It was Christmas Day, 1776. We were in Pennsylvania, and Washington was planning his New Year’s eve attack on the Hessians, who were across the Delaware River in Trenton. It was then that Williams – yes, NBC Anchor Brian Williams – got the idea that we must move out that very night.

We had all just opened our presents. Williams had gotten some new Brooks Brothers socks and was trying them on when it occurred to him that he had plans for New Year’s Eve, and so it was essential the Continental Army decamp right away!

Williams went to Washington’s tent and told him it was time to launch the attack. But the general was uncertain. The weather was bad and the river was icy. This was not the night for a crossing.

But unlike Washington, who vacillated, Williams was resolute...


Anonymous said...

I'm a longtime reader and lover of this site, partially because this is an area of history that I don't know enough about. I have jumped in to comment before a few times, but not that often because the people who do have a vastly superior knowledge than I, and I would surely look the fool. And because of this, I may not be the someone whose opinions anyone here cares about, and would understand if you chose not pay much attention to some attempted constructive criticism from a lightweight such as myself.

And with that qualification:

As a reader, I find it maddeningly frustrating that American Creation so often tells commenters they or their comments are not welcome because they don't limit their content to the narrow defining bounders of the blog -- and then post a links like this one: The Daily Caller taking a shot at a 21st century network news anchor. Seriously?!

Worse, it's posted by the very person who polices your comments section, the person who TELLS people they and their comments aren't welcome for straying outside the lines.

It's your site, so do what you will. But I suspect I am not alone in thinking that it would be better if you were to just say "content that support this political belief are allowed no matter their relation to the site,content that supports that are not allowed." Or better yet, just not shooing away commenters who do the same. Or practicing what you ask of your readers. Or something.

Because as it is, it's really frustrating.

Tom Van Dyke said...

As long as we keep doing "David Barton Sucks" posts, think of innocuous ones like this as a tonic.

Thx for commenting!

Tom Van Dyke said...

On the partisan front, for the record I passed up laughing at President Obama's claim that GWash made beer in the White House.

[John And Abigail A were the first residents of the WH.]

Anonymous said...

I honestly can't tell if I'm being trolled or not.

Tom Van Dyke said...

Who's trolling whom?

Anonymous said...


I tried to point out something that American Creation does that, I really do suspect, irritates not just me. I tried to do it i the most respectful manner I possibly could; I even tried to give AC an out for the reasons you might want to decide that I was not your target audience and ignore me.

Your 3 responses have been:

1. You justified having a double standard by pointing out that (with Barton) you have a double standard,

2. You added a criticism of Obama, which again, would have gotten a regular reader a note that they were unwelcome here for saying EXACTLY what you just said, and then

3. Called me a troll for being sad/irritated to get this response.

Fine. You win. I really do like 90% of what you guys of here a lot. But I get that you would prefer I not be here, so I'll leave you guys to it.


jimmiraybob said...

anon - "But I get that you would prefer I not be here, so I'll leave you guys to it."

Sadly. you are right. Over the years, I've seen TVD's "style" make the comments section a war zone. He's fighting the culture wars and if you're not with him you are against him. And, every new voice that shows up gets the hammer as it's best to get rid of potential challengers to his orthodoxy early.

And, everything is about calling attention to himself and his cause and disrupting discussion to steer it to his culture-war topic of the hour. He campaigns around the intertubes doing this.

And, when called on it, he'll feign righteous indignation.

Rule #1 with TVD is, the rules are what the rules are as he calls them and they are invoked as he needs them to shape his argument and to baffle/silence/intimidate others and they are completely fluid for him but not for ye.

Thanks though for attempting to engage.

JMS said...

I concur with jimmyraybob, and encourage Anon to keep commenting regardless of what anyone else tries to impose on you.

Tom - this type of pointless and really bad right-wing satire (attacking not only Williams, but the Clintons, Obama, Biden, etc.) is inappropriate. You are making a false equivalency fallacy (journalists and politicians are not historians). This is not even remotely close to legit challenges to David Barton's plethora of unsubstantiated historical claims.

Tom Van Dyke said...

Actually, satirizing Williams is neither left nor right. Or shouldn't be, although whatever squawking I've seen has come from unmistakably left-wing voices such as you three.

Now why is that, that mocking Williams is seen as partisan? Heh.

As for attacking partisan figures, I have not done so on our front page that I recall. If I ever have, I withdraw it with apologies. In fact, I brought up Obama's historical error precisely to illustrate that I don't use the front page for partisanship.

However, our front page has seen frequent attacks on the religious right that are only tangential [or are irrelevant] to our topic of religion and the Founding, to which I continue to object.

A certain amount of partisanship is going to leak into the comments sections, and if it doesn't take over, I suppose it's OK. I have not told this "Anonymous" person who's crawling up my butt not to write. Bring it.

And for the record, 'twas he/she who used "troll" first. The guilty accuse themselves.

I leave you with the sage WFB:

Though liberals do a great deal of talking about hearing other points of view, it sometimes shocks them to learn that there are other points of view.

Liberal up.

JMS said...

Tom - I'm certainly not adverse to varying opinions of whatever stripe.

I am objecting to your insertion from the Daily Caller, which describes itself as, "a politically conservative news and opinion website based in Washington, D.C., United States. Founded by Tucker Carlson, a libertarian conservative political pundit, and Neil Patel, former adviser to former Vice President Dick Cheney."

Why get all snarky about Brian Williams? As Jon Stewart noted, "“Finally, someone is being held to account for misleading America about the Iraq war. It might not necessarily be the first person you’d want held accountable on that list. But never again will Brian Williams mislead this great nation about being shot at in a war we probably wouldn’t have ended up in if the media had applied this level of scrutiny to the actual f*cking war,” like the lethal lies told by Neil Patel's former boss. I'll say no more on this topic.

Tom Van Dyke said...

I am objecting to your insertion from the Daily Caller, which describes itself as, "a politically conservative news and opinion website based in Washington, D.C., United States.

Yes, you got the vapors when I posted something from Dennis Prager's org too. Jonathan Chait was quite right about you left-wingers. You spend a lot of time trying to silence other people.

But it would be a mistake to categorize today’s p.c. culture as only an academic phenomenon. Political correctness is a style of politics in which the more radical members of the left attempt to regulate political discourse by defining opposing views as bigoted and illegitimate. Two decades ago, the only communities where the left could exert such hegemonic control lay within academia, which gave it an influence on intellectual life far out of proportion to its numeric size. Today’s political correctness flourishes most consequentially on social media, where it enjoys a frisson of cool and vast new cultural reach. And since social media is also now the milieu that hosts most political debate, the new p.c. has attained an influence over mainstream journalism and commentary beyond that of the old.

So, I object to your objection and think it shows just what's wrong with the academic establishment, of which iirc, you're a member. Well, you maybe can bully your sophomores in your classroom but it doesn't work here.