First Ladies: Barbara Pierce Bush

Lead: Only one other in American history was the wife and mother of Presidents of the United States. In the august company of Abigail Adams is Barbara Pierce Bush.

Intro. : A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: She met her husband at a Christmas dance when she was sixteen. Both were children of privilege and were educated among the Eastern elite. They were married during George’s service in World War II, and after his graduation from Yale, they struck out for the west Texas oil patch and began to build a business and a family. The future President’s financial success led him into a prodigious political career and an unequaled resume. Six children and twenty-nine homes later, they moved into the White House.

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Taxation – America’s Disdain I

Lead: Since 1913, when the 16th Amendment authorizing the income tax was ratified, Americans have alternately bellowed or whined each year each year at tax time.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Historically, Americans have enjoyed a love/hate relationship with government’s revenues – that is, taxes. It was disagreement over taxes imposed by Britain that helped spark the cry for independence in colonial America. “No taxation without representation.” Today, throughout the world, taxes are customarily paid with money. This is a fairly recent method of payment. From ancient times taxes were commonly paid in goods and services, including labor and military service. The most common form of tax in the ancient world and the largest revenue producer was the “tithe,” the giving of a fixed percentage of agricultural produce. Despite this, collection of taxes was very efficient. Governments have always managed to get their due. Taxes supported the building of temples and monuments, the construction of infrastructure such as roads and waterworks, they were used to increase of wealth of rulers, and, of course, the most expensive thing any government can do, wage war. “Corvee,” or the mandatory contribution of personal labor to the state, was used by ancient Egyptians. It is the earliest form of taxation for which records exist.

 

 

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Dancing Stallions from Lipizza II

Lead: Bred as royal horses of the Austrian emperors, the beautiful and graceful Lipizzaner stallions were the subject of a spectacular rescue at the end of World War II.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The Hapsburg emperors bred the Lipizzaners for their strength and intelligence. With the end of World War I, the empire was no more but the white stallions, in their home at Vienna's Spanish Riding School, continued the tradition of the precision riding originally developed as battlefield maneuvers against enemy soldiers.

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Dancing Stallions from Lipizza I

Lead: The graceful and elegant stallions of Vienna's Spanish Riding School have a long and fascinating history.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: It is hard for those living in the late twentieth century to imagine a time in which motorized transport was nonexistent and the horse in its various breeds was the indispensable provider of locomotion and carriage for goods and people. Today, expensive to maintain and relatively rare, the horse has largely become a diversion and source of entertainment for the well-to-do. There was a time, however, when one had a horse or walked, when goods were mostly conveyed by horse power or by humans, when the fate of nations was decided by the quality of horse bred and fought in their service.

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History’s Tricks

Lead: Historical study often helps reveal twists in the human journey. This series on A Moment in Time examines history’s turning points.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In his first volume of Reason in Common Sense, the Spanish-born Harvard philosopher Jorge Agustín Nicolás Ruiz de Santayana y Borrás, more popularly known as George Santayana, was attempting to explain the true nature of progress. He asserted that retentiveness is an essential part of change, bringing something of value from the past. Absent the coach of experience, change, much less progress, cannot lead to improvement in the future. Misquoted and paraphrased in countless ways over the years, his most famous aphorism describes life unprotected by the values of past experience as like unto that among savages where infancy is everlasting. He wrote, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”

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Sir Francis Drake III

Lead: His voyage around the world behind him, Sir Francis Drake, Queen Elizabeth's Golden Admiral, intensified his campaign to make miserable the life of the King of Spain.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Returning from the East in 1581, Drake made Plymouth his home and was elected mayor of the town. He served with distinction, revamping the municipal water system with such care that his improvements lasted for decades. Ever restless, he returned to the sea which was both the love of his life and source of his fortune. In 1585 Elizabeth sent Drake back to the Caribbean where, over a period of months, he renewed his reputation as the scourge of Spain. His occasionally brutal capture and sacking of Cartagena in Columbia, St. Augustine in Florida, and Santo Domingo, combined with attacks on the Cape Verde Islands, were not as successful or lucrative as previous forays, but caused enormous financial distress to the Spanish and confirmed their hatred for el draque or the dragon, as he was coming to be known. This campaign and other conflicts with England so incensed Spanish King Philip II that he made the fateful decision to assemble a huge naval Armada to invade the island kingdom.

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Sir Francis Drake II

Commissioned by Queen Elizabeth to forage and loot the lands of the Spanish King, Francis Drake embarked on a voyage that took him around the world.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In 1572, after a lengthy apprenticeship, Drake took two tiny ships on a cruise into the Caribbean. His vessels may have been small but his ambition was hefty. He attacked the town of Nombre de Dios in Panama and though not completely successful since he was wounded in the attempt, the foray netted substantial plunder and made him a rich man. Ever the adventurer, he and a small group of his men crossed the Isthmus of Panama and from a high western ridge vowed that he would someday explore the vast Pacific Ocean that lay before him. Elizabeth was engaged in one of her occasional diplomatic flirtations with the Spanish government and, while privately pleased at Drake’s success, could not acknowledge him publicly. For several years, he dropped out of the public eye, quietly helping to suppress a rebellion in Ireland.

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Sir Francis Drake I

Lead: Part scoundrel, part tyrant, part patriot, Francis Drake, for generations of his countrymen, was the symbol of England’s greatness.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Drake was born in Devonshire, southwestern England in the early 1540s, the last years of the reign of King Henry VIII. His father was a tenant farmer, but also an ardent Protestant lay preacher. In 1549 the family had to flee to southeast England during one of the Catholic uprisings common to the West Country. In those the years the nation was struggling over whether to stay with Protestantism or return to the Roman Catholic Church. Drake’s lifelong and enthusiastic commitment to the Protestant faith and apparent delight in tweaking the tail of Catholic Spain may be traced to the experiences of his troubled youth.

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