Monday, November 29, 2010

What Would George Washington Say About the U.S.S. George Washington Being Sent to the Yellow Sea for War Games With South Korea?

"Excessive partiality for one foreign nation, and excessive dislike of another, cause those whom they actuate to see danger only on one side, and serve to veil and even second the arts of influence on the other," spake the Founder, in George Washington's Farewell Address, as if anticipating this news ten score and fourteen years later — USS George Washington in Yellow Sea. "Real patriots, who may resist the intrigues of the favorite, are liable to become suspected and odious; while its tools and dupes usurp the applause and confidence of the people, to surrender their interests."

He continued in his 1796 address, "The great rule of conduct for us, in regard to foreign nations, is, in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connexion as possible." What would he have thought of our six decade "political connexion" with South Korea? "Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground?"

(A note about the portrait: it's "[a] reverse painting on glass, 1800-5, attributed to the Chinese artist Foeiqua, ... an unauthorized copy of Gilbert Stuart's portrait of Washington," commissioned at a time when there was "a mania for Washingtoniana" and "a considerable demand for the Chinese Washington portraits" — Wa Shing Ton Tzu.)

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Omnes Sancti et Sanctæ Coreæ, orate pro nobis.