Wednesday

1901 stock crash happened on this day: hold on Joan!

Whatever they tell you, the truth is, the 1% learned all it needed to in hording up the peoples money on this day in 1901.  "The greatest general panic that Wall Street has ever known" is the way the New York Times described it.   For weeks, two opposing coalitions (James J. Hill and J.P.Morgan vs. Edward H. Hariman (Bush family) and Kuhn, Loeb &Co.) had been trying to buy up every last share of Northern Pacific Railroad stock in an effort to control western rail traffic and access to Chicago.  Neither side was exactly sure who had more shares, so just a few shares could mean control.  In 24 hours it had been realized that more shares had been sold than existed, which meant that the short sellers had to pay anything asked for Northern Pacific in order to repay the shares they had borrowed.  The market was cornered.  Northern had closed on May 8 at about $200; it was at $400 shortly after opening today; by noon it was over $700, and a little after 2:00 shares sold for $1000.  To raise cash to pay these ridiculous prices, brokers were selling other stocks in a frenzy, and those share prices crashed.  "All sense of value and sanity was gone," observed Bernard Baruch, who was just beginning his fabled career on Wall Street.  By 2:15, the deadline for short sellers to pay back the borrowed shares, the crisis was effectively over because Morgan had forged a truce with Harriman, and lenders announced they would make Northern shares available at $150.00
Boy did a light-bulb go off in their heads that day, until, that is, liberal politicians put in place regulations to help avoided such a panic.   Of course, the regulations didn't do much in a few years after the Morgan's and Hariman's got out of the stock market and became the Federal Reserved earning interest on every dollar, ever created, ever spent.
"Ummmm yahhhh, haaaahh,  We Control Everything!" They cheered.
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Things weren't so joyful for Joan of Arc on this day in 1491 for her accusers showed her the torture tools that would be used on her if she didn't stop acting like a woman and say "God Only Talks To Men."

To which, our dear Joan said:

Truly, if you were to have me torn limb from limb and send my soul out of my body, I would say nothing else.  And if I did say anything, afterwards I should always say that you had made me say it by force.

I have asked my voices to counsel me whether I should submit to the Church, because the churchmen were pressing me to submit to the Church.  And my voices have told me that, if I want our Lord to help me, I must lay all my deeds before him.

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In ancient Rome, the first day of the three-day festival of the Lemuria took place on this date.  Its purpose was to appease the spirits of the dead (lemurs), who haunted homes where they had once lived.  The master of the house went through the rooms tossing black beans (symbolizing the underworld) as offerings to the ghost.

Makes sense to me.

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