[ExI] two years in the slammer for blammisphy?
rtomek at ceti.pl
Wed May 12 14:39:06 UTC 2010
On Tue, 11 May 2010, spike wrote:
> Ja. Out here in Taxifornia, we don't really know jack about the history of
> Europe. All Europeans are tossed in with the ever shrinking pool of white
> people. We are expected to know all about Mexico for some odd reason. The
> many different brands of Asians have their own intricate histories and
> prejudices, which we white guys are completely unaware. If I had a million
> years to live, I might spend a few of them trying to master it all, but for
> now it is much easier to just plead ignorance and not worry about it.
Sure, those subjects are wide. But ignorance is lulling. It is also
deceiving those who choose it.
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org
> > [mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of
> > David Lubkin
> > Sent: Tuesday, May 11, 2010 1:32 PM
> > To: ExI chat list
> > Subject: Re: [ExI] two years in the slammer for blammisphy?
> > Spike wrote:
> > >Perhaps Tomasz can clarify, but my interpretation is that
> > the borders
> > >of Poland fluctuated wildly over the centuries.
> > Most of my family came from towns that changed country. My
> > grandmother, for instance, was born in what was Russia when
> > she was born and is Poland now. Adults spoke Yiddish and the
> > kids learned whatever the official language was at the time,
> > so they could translate for their parents.
> > Should a Wikipedia article refer to Gdansk or to Danzig?
> > The issue is common, messy, and volatile. See
> > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Gdansk/Vote
Sometimes, IMHO, people debating this issue are forgetting about subtle
details. The one I want to remember is this: for a very long time, Poland
was really a multilingual, multicultural country. In our cities, for
example, a big number of people spoke German. However, I doubt they
considered themself to be Germans (as there was no Germany == Deutschland
at the time, there was a big number of duchies, city-states, few kingdoms
and one or two empires consisting of German-speaking people). When the
time came, however, to choose "nationality", they chose to be Poles. Some
of them chose otherwise, no problemo with this. This process took place
some 150-200 years ago. So this not like saying that some or all of our
cities should belong to Germany or something.
When it comes to Gdansk, for a long time it had been lying on the border
between Poland (Kingdom of Poland, Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth etc) and
land belonging to Teutonic Knights (later known under the name of
Prussia). It was an important hanseatic port, source of considerable
income and we were fighting to keep it, so were the Teutons.
The Gdansk citizens themselves, seem to have been choosing sides as what
pleased them more. However, from what I have been taught in school, they
more often choosed to be part of Poland than not. No surprise, there was
quite a difference between Poland and Teutons - for example, I would not
expect them to be tollerant to other religions, like Jews or Protestants,
which we had here in great numbers. Teutonic Knights, mind you, was a
religious order of christian chivarly. Later, when they converted into
secular state of Prussia, they have also changed their faith into
Protestantism. Still, I am not sure how they were dealing with other
Anyway, there were times when Gdansk called for Polish support against
Teutons (and received it... or not, sometimes we were simply too busy
with other enemies). At least once Gdansk was strongly pro-Polish, this
was the place where we had built a fleet that fought victorious sea war
As Poland went weaker and weaker, so Gdansk went into being Danzig more
and more. Not much surprise here. Finally, Poland was no more (for some
time), so there was not much to choose from. No surprise, again. After the
WWI, we would have been pleased to get Gdansk back, however it had been
decided (by "powers") to make it into a city-state. So much for Hitler
demands "that we give him Gdansk away" - we don't give what we don't have,
right? For about twenty years, Gdansk/Danzig went on under dual name, with
two official languages (Polish and German). The intention of all this, was
probably to wait and see, who becomes stronger in the long run and to give
the city to a winner. So both countries continued to display their
influence (no surprise again).
In the meantime, we were in need of a real sea port (we had a
coastline, but no big port on it, this is why Gdansk would have been
welcomed so much). So we have built ourselves a city not very far away
from Gdansk and it is a city of Gdynia. IMHO, this was a great move.
Gdynia was able to prosper better thanks to the nearby well-developed
city (there is also Sopot there, too, a touristic hotspot). At the same
time, our position in Gdansk/Danzig Free City had been strenghtened.
As Hitler rose to power, so Gdansk leaned towards being Danzig again. I
believe, the majority of people living there were of German origin, and
since the nationality concept was well developed, they thought of
themselves as Germans. Well, for over a hundred years they were living in
Prussia, so not much surprise, twenty years of Free City would not erase
After WWII, Gdansk is Gdansk again. Nice way to sum this up, eh. A big
number of Germans have been transported out of Poland and into Germany. I
mean, those that have not been transferred deep into Soviet Union (they
took civilians, too). I believe not all of them deserved such fate. This
was not our decicion, more like it had been decided above our (and
German's) heads. Actually, those who made it into Germany, probably
considered themselves lucky. Even if today they may not remember about it.
The "empty space" had been filled by people moved out from Polish eastern
territory (our so called Kresy Wschodnie or in English, something like
Eastern Edge) as it got to become part of Soviet Union.
Nowadays, all that is left from Gdansk' German past are historic
buildings, old fotos and tales of people once living there. Perhaps I
would have been able to accept it as Danzig but frankly, I feel much more
comfortable thinking of it as Gdansk. Besides, there are not many ways to
make it back. Not in a civilised world. I believe, in a civilisation as
defined by so called "western standards" (which are derived from "latin
standards"), there is no such way at all.
> > (I think it's useful for extropians to be conscious of the
> > fervid ferocity that others bring to so many issues that we
> > shrug over.
> > If only to restrain our own gush when discussing *our*
> > passions with them.)
I don't think being conscious hurts. As marine soldier could have said it,
pulling one's head from one's ass will not hurt more than the other way.
** A C programmer asked whether computer had Buddha's nature. **
** As the answer, master did "rm -rif" on the programmer's home **
** directory. And then the C programmer became enlightened... **
** Tomasz Rola mailto:tomasz_rola at bigfoot.com **
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