Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Rush: Indians Scammed Us Out of Manhattan

OK, I know I said that I'd be offline but I couldn't help but look at my Republican MIL's toolbar on Explorer and saw a button for Drudge, another for Fox "News" and another for Rush. I wanted to see what the O Man was up to since I cannot stand the idea of subscribing to his newsletter or even registering for his site. So, since I'm at the inlaws' house using their computer...

As you can expect, ole Rushbo didn't disappoint. The title of his screed is the title of this post: Indians Scammed Us Out of Manhattan. Nice to see that Rush is already getting into the holiday season and is decking the halls with things that dropped out of a bull's ass.

Lemme give you a smattering of Rush's wisdom, his source for this being a book written about Teddy Roosevelt, a man who would've ripped Rush's balls right out of his scrotum and shoved them down his throat:
Okay, one of the great myths of Thanksgiving is that we swindled the Indians when we bought Manhattan Island from them, we swindled them. Twenty-four bucks is the equivalent. It turns out, according to a book about Teddy Roosevelt, that that's not true. It turns out that the Indians are the ones that ran the real estate scam when they sold Manhattan. It's a book on Teddy Roosevelt, Commissioner Roosevelt: The Story of Theodore Roosevelt and the New York City Police, 1895-1897, by H. Paul Jeffers. Here are the relevant paragraphs about this...

At any rate, the original story of Thanksgiving is BS, we'll set that straight later today, and now we find out that the Dutch got swindled. (laughing) The Indians can't catch a break. Well, they are catching a break in Seattle.

Minstrel Boy: Attack.

Mind you, this is coming from a right wing blowhard who once said in the 80's that there were more Native Americans now than there ever were ever since we nice white men put them on reservations. So why wouldn't a cigar-sucking neanderthal like Limbaugh take his historical cues from a guy who's, at best, a latter day Suetonius (who for a long time has been regarded as a pop/tabloid biographer/historian of the Roman empire) who got his start writing true crime fiction?


At November 26, 2008 at 10:23 PM, Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

rush is, as usual, absolutely wrong. while it may be true that the indians that traded with the dutch were scamming, selling land they didn't own, they were mostly all dead in a matter of a few short months.

the dutch weren't active indian fighters, beyond of course, the usual biological warfare that europeans visited upon native populations. smallpox, the common cold, influenza all worked their quiet magic and rendered gun and knife conquests uneccessary.

more indians now than there were when columbus landed?


even for rush that's a crapload. but what the fuck would you expect from an oxycontin snorting sex tourist? only republicans would turn to him for moral clarity.

At November 27, 2008 at 1:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your MIL, eh? Would she be a MILF -- Mother-In-Law-Fuckwit? She lets you stay under her roof? You consent to do so? You're a gentleman and a scholar if you don't open some attachments from the Eastern European spammers while you're on her machine.

At November 27, 2008 at 10:41 AM, Blogger jurassicpork said...

Well, to her credit, last night while we were watching ET's segment on the Obama family, she did say that the GOP fucked everything up, starting with Bush.

That still doesn't explain why she has Rush, Drudge and Fox on her IE browser toolbar.

She's 77 and I don't fuck with her as much as I used to.

MB: I knew I could count on your erudition. Call me crazy but I'd rather trust a Native American's version of history than a bloated right wing drug addict.

At November 27, 2008 at 11:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MB, rush should be strung up by his...cigar.

That said, I am curious about the statistics. I've heard that there are more Irish-Americans than there are actual Irish in Ireland (sorry, I don't have a source). I have no source of info for population statistics for Native Americans before the Europeans landed here. Given the incredible explosion in population overall in this country over the past 350-plus years, it seems entirely plausible that the collective population of Native Americans in the U.S. might actually be larger than it was before the Europeans got a foothold. Do you have a link to some resources? Given that what the Europeans did to the Native Americans was and is atrocious, I'm still curious about the numbers. (And rush can go Cheney himself with a pineapple....)

Ms Wilberforce

At November 27, 2008 at 12:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Given the incredible explosion in population overall in this country over the past 350-plus years, it seems entirely plausible that the collective population of Native Americans in the U.S. might actually be larger than it was before the Europeans got a foothold."

You cannot possibly mean what you literally say. "entirely plausible"? Not even
remotely plausible. The "explosion in population" is overwhelmingly the result of immigration and reproduction of Anglo-European and other peoples.

As for "the Indians", the most extensive and respected studies estimate that at the time of the conquest, the population of indigenous people north of the Rio Grande was roughly between 10-12 million. South of the Rio Grande, the figure is roughly 80 million., of which approximately 95% were wiped out through various means within a few centuries.

I'll see if I can locate some of the sources for this information.

Fuck Thanksgiving. A German might just as readily celebrate Hitler's birthday, though in truth the comparison is unfair to the Germans.

At November 27, 2008 at 5:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I used "Plausible" for a reason:

Main Entry [from]:
Function: adjective
Etymology: Latin plausibilis worthy of applause, from plausus, past participle of plaudere
Date: 1565

1: superficially fair, reasonable, or valuable but often specious [a plausible pretext]
2: superficially pleasing or persuasive [a swindler… , then a quack, then a smooth, plausible gentleman — R. W. Emerson]
3: appearing worthy of belief [the argument was both powerful and plausible]

For those not well-versed in population statistics of Native American peoples, the assertion that there are more now than there were when the Europeans landed is definitely plausible - not necessarily true, but plausible. Plausibility sucks in a lot of people who never bother to fact-check. People like rush count on this.

Regardless, the premise of rush's rant, that Native Americans are somehow better off for being the victim of European settlement and pogroms, even IF you allow him his assertion that there are more Native Americans now than there were then (which, when you Google the stats, is incorrect) is total bullshit.

As is rush.

I long ago ceased celebrating the mythology of Thanksgiving, but I reserve the right to use the day to visit with my family, take note of the things that are going right in my life, and resolve to make the world a better place in whatever way I can.

Ms Wilberforce

At November 27, 2008 at 6:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mrs. W.,

You neglected to provide the definition of "entirely" -- a word you used to qualify "plausible".

In any event, your references to "those" not well-versed in pop. stats., is "plausible" -- provided "those" do not include people who are Native Americans (who are, by and large, well aware of just how few of "them" are left, how extensive were the nations of indigenous peoples that once populated North America).

It hardly requires knowledge of pop. stats. to regard as implausible the assertion that there exists today MORE indigenous people than in the 15th and 16th century. All that is required is a bit of reading.

As for T-giving, you are entitled to do whatever you choose on that day. I don't need the excuse of some bogus white man's holiday to do everything you mention.

At November 27, 2008 at 8:03 PM, Blogger jurassicpork said...

Click here for an overview of the various reasons for Native American decimation over the last five centuries.

Unfortunately, no hard data exists, since indigenous peoples didn't take a census, to tell us how many native Americans there were when Columbus and the Spaniards showed up. Some estimates have run as low as 8.4 million, others run as high as 110,000,000+. My suspicion is that the true number lies roughly somewhere in the middle.

These explorers and conquistadors brought with them diseases from the Old World for which the native Americans didn't have biological defenses (smallpox was especially devastating).

But disease, unfortunately, wasn't the only contributing factor to the decline in the indigenous population in prior centuries. There was genocide (democide, according the phrase coined by RJ Rummel). Famine certainly had something to do with it.

So we certainly have no idea how many native Americans there were in any one century until one gets to the 19th, even though that data must be viewed circumspectly.

Plus, since we also have to factor in inter-racial marriage and people of partial native American ancestry, there's no real way to determine how many native Americans there truly are.

But Limbaugh's fallacious assertion a couple of decades ago that there are more now than there ever were without any hard data to back up his claims is rooted in nothing but typical right wing, Caucasian stupidity designed to advance the absurd proposition that taking away their land and shunting them on reservations, breaking literally 99% of the treaties we'd signed with them is somehow good for them.

So how many are there today? No one still knows for sure.

But here's a sobering fact: This native American site for children not only lists the native American population of the US and Canada combined according to the 2000 census but they felt they had to go out of their way to tell their young readers, Native Americans are not extinct."

At November 28, 2008 at 12:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I stand by what I said. In your mind, and others who are familiar with the numbers that JP provided, rush's assertions are NOT plausible. For most whites, and especially the ones who listen to rush, the assertions about the numbers ARE entirely plausible simply because most of us have never really given them much thought, and don't know any better. MOST BELIEVE THEM COMPLETELY, without questioning their veracity.

You seem hell-bent on picking a fight with me, just because I was a little surprised by something someone wrote and was respectfully asking for some clarification - even though I completely agreed with Minstrel Boy and JP that rush is a total and complete asshole, and that his main point was bullshit. He makes shit up as he goes along.

Even though I read quite a bit, and try to stay informed, I do not - cannot - be an expert in EVERYTHING. NO one can. I don't assume that everyone has the same knowledge that I have, and I refuse to grind off someone's head simply because they are less informed about a particular topic than I am.

I don't need the excuse of some bogus white man's holiday to do everything you mention.

Nor do I. I just take advantage of the opportunity presented.

Enjoy your weekend.

Ms Wilberforce

At November 28, 2008 at 9:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"In your mind, and others who are familiar with the numbers that JP provided, rush's assertions are NOT plausible. For most whites, and especially the ones who listen to rush, the assertions about the numbers ARE entirely plausible simply because most of us have never really given them much thought, and don't know any better. MOST BELIEVE THEM COMPLETELY, without questioning their veracity."

This statement is conceptually consistent with the core proposition in you initial response -- i.e., that it "seems" "entirely plausible" that the number of indigenous peoples in north america today exceeds the number at the time of the conquest.

Of course, to say that something subjectively, "in your mind" "seems" to be this or that begs the question as to how or why the subject would be or could become predisposed to the position articulated. That would be an interesting topic for discussion, though I suspect that we would learn little not already known about the attitudes among demographic groups within the imperial society.

What all this has to do with right-wing talk radio personalities is of marginal interest to me. I would hope the same may be true of other readers of this blog. It requires very little effort to point out the misrepresentations, selective omissions, misstatements, conclusory assertions and the like peddled by people like Rush Limbaugh. At the same time, I don't believe I have encountered a single person who listens to Limbaugh whose point of view or politics was changed as a result of being informed of the facts. That said, there is certainly some value in exposing him for what he is.

Our principle task is

At November 28, 2008 at 11:15 AM, Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

here's the thing, not only were the people, and in many cases, like the mandan or the wampanog, the cultures, the viability as a people with a distinct language and customs, a spiritual perspective, have disappeared.

rush, you ignorant motherfucker, james fenimore cooper, who was not a historian, but a vivid observer of his times nonetheless, wrote last of the mohicans in 1826.

by 1826 folks in upstate new york were already noticing that large segments, and in many cases, like the mohicans, the pawtucket, the crumbling iroquois confederation, the "six civilised tribes" which jackson was in the process of evicting, in defiance of a supreme court ruling, to oklahoma.

if there are more indians left rush, where are the languages?

even if many folks with native american dna inside them are walking around, i would wager that many of them (like the folks in arkansas such as clinton) who say "i am part cherokee") are fucking rape babies.

it wasn't a tactic, but it was something that happened, was that nations like the lakota, the hunkpapa, and the other loosely affiliated souix, were pushed out onto the great plains (where they were destroyed as a people) by the encroachment of the white people. here's how it would work. the whites "settled" around the great lakes, the nations living there, like the huron, the suak and fox, the blackfoot, pushed into the wisconsin woodlands.

this is what created the plains horse culture wrapped around the buffalo. those cultures, which because of movies and other fictions, became everybody's concept of "indian," only lasted a bit less than 80 years.

the souix became a horse and buffalo culture because they were chased out of the forests. the souix, in turn, displaced the paiute, the pawnee, the ute, the arapaho, and the comanchee.

fucking rush is too goddamned stupid to know that there really isn't any such thing as "native american" culture. there used to be over 800 nations all with distinct cultures, languages, and customs.

columbus landed in the bahamas and the shit started to fly.

fuck rush.

At November 28, 2008 at 3:07 PM, Blogger Stan B. said...

Although there's no question as to who got fucked over centuries ago (and on to this very day) on "our" fair shores; there is, at the entrance to Battery Park at Broadway and Bowling Green, a monument commemorating the alleged event where Manhattan exchanged hands from "noble savage" to "Christian savior."

I don't know who the sculptor was, and ya know he didn't give a rat's ass for historical accuracy- but he certainly got the NYC ethos right. Look closely at both the native and pilgrim faces confronting each other, and they both got the same shit eating "I just fucked you over royally and you aint got the slightest clue" grins on their faces.


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