Perhaps newspapers are no longer the first draft of history.
I was reminded of that fading tradition last week when I picked up a mint condition set of Winston Churchill’s “A History of the English Speaking Peoples” at Grassroots Books.
Every time some peacenik advocates diplomacy over combat, the warmongers always shout “appeasement” and trash the memory of Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain who cut a deal with Hitler.
“History will not be kind to Neville, for I shall write the history,” Churchill groused. A few years ago, a historian defended Chamberlain, asserting that Chamberlain bought precious time to prepare for the crucial Battle of Britain.
I guarantee that as Tsar Donaldov Vladimirovitch and his saber-rattlesnakes bring us to the nuclear brink with North Korea, some video game warriors will warn against “appeasement.”
America has accepted a perpetual state of war and lots of greedy swine are hogging serious profits as obituaries proliferate. Speaking of which…
DISSING THE GRATEFUL DEAD. If you are not a person of prominence or your family can’t afford to pay for an obituary, your passing doesn’t qualify for the first draft of history. Even then, family-written obits are often besotted with poor grammar, incomplete information or outright falsehoods.
And so we come to the passing of sweet Roxana Hillygus Cupples who died March 9 at 77. The dark-haired beauty was my first employee in 1971. My ad agency leased a 13th-floor corner office at what is now Reno City Hall. I needed help while waiting for my crew from Gomorrah South. I found Roxanne.
We lost touch until I crashed the annual Washoe County Republican dinner a few years back as the only Democrat in the crowd.
Her March 19 Reno Gazette-Journal obit omitted that she had once been married to William F. Harrah hisself. He apparently had a weakness for willowy brunettes, as a previous spouse was country singer Bobbie Gentry.
Lady history deserves better as does forever-young Rox. A newspaper of record has now corrected her first draft.
SINS OF OMISSION, PART DEUX. Last Sunday’s RGJ was filled with outrage at “news” of Washoe County School District financial woes. It was no surprise to regular Barbwire readers. This column has been years ahead of major corporate papers, catching both Washoe and Clark phonying up graduation stats and also buying toxic turf for athletic fields. (See Barbwire.US/)
After the 2015 legislative session, only the Barbwire reported that education funding remained flat despite a $1.3 billion tax increase. Hence Washoe’s woes, the bitter fruits of corporate welfare.
TRIPLE PLAY. On March 13, the Associated Press reported that Rep. Mark Amodei, R-Nev., will not vote for Trumpcare. KOLO TV-8 used it at 11:00 p.m. I included it in an e-bulletin to subscribers later that night. Nada in the Reno paper as yet. I guess it ain’t news.
VIVA CHAVEZ. I’ve invited Gov. Sandoval to speak at César Chávez XV at Circus Circus March 29. No response at presstime. All are welcome. See CesarChavezNevada.com for tickets.
¡Sí se puede!
Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno. (Pardon my Spanglish.)
Andrew Barbano is a 48-year Nevadan and editor of NevadaLabor.com. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org> Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988.